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VV \ ^ H 


All life and achievement is evolution; present wisdom comes 
from past experience, and present commercial prosperity has come 
only from past exertion and suffering. The deeds and motives of 
the men that have gene before have been instrumental in shaping 
the destinies of later communities and states. The development of 
a new country was at once a task and a privilege. It required great 
courage, sacrifice and privation. Compare the present conditions 
of the residents of Jefferson county, Illinois, with what they were 
one hundred years ago. From a trackless wilderness and virgin 
prairie it has come to be a center of prosperity and civilization, with 
millions of wealth, systems of intersecting railways, grand educa- 
tional institutions, marvelous industries and immense agricultural 
productions. Can any thinking person be insensible to the fascina- 
tion of the study which discloses the incentives, hopes, aspirations 
and efforts of the early pioneers who so strongly laid the foundation 
upon which has been reared the magnificent prosperity of later days? 
To perpetuate the story of these people and to trace and record the 
social, political and industrial progress of the community from its 
first inception is the function of the local historian. A sincere pur- 
pose to preserve facts and personal memoirs that are deserving of 
preservation, and which unite the present to the past is the motive 
for the present publication. The work has been in the hands of 
able writers, who have, after much patient study and research, 
produced here the most complete biographical memoirs of Jeffer- 
son county, Illinois, ever offered to the public. A specially valu- 

able and interesting department is that one devoted to the sketches 
of representative citizens of this county whose records deserve per- 
petuation because of their worth, effort and accomplishment. The 
publishers desire to extend their thanks to these gentlemen who have 
so faithfully labored to this end. Thanks are also due to the citizens 
of Jefferson county for the uniform kindness with v/hich they have 
regarded this undertaking, and for their many services rendered 
in the gaining of necessary information. 

In placing "Wall's History of Jefferson County, Illinois," be- 
fore the citizens, the publishers can conscientiously claim that they 
have carried out the plan as outlined in the prospectus. Every 
biographical sketch in the work has been submitted to the party in- 
terested, for correction, and therefore any error of fact, if there be 
any, is solely due to the person for whom the sketch was prepared. 
Confident that our efforts to please will fully meet the approbation 
of the public, we are. 


The Publishers. 


Having been a citizen of Jefferson County and Mount Vernon 
since the Presidential campaign of 1840, when WiUiam Henry 
Harrison was elected, and having accepted a request of Messrs. 
B. F. Bowen and Company, to edit a plain, succinct History Qi Jef- 
ferson County, I naturally desired to make it as complete as possible 
and have taken pains to arrive at the facts and give the pioneers of 
the county the praise due them by a gratefulposterity. We have also 
tried to give proper credit to those who have from time to time dur- 
ing the century, striven to keep the moral trend of the county upward. 
The history of a county is best told in the lives of its people. It 
is safe to say that the life of every good citizen is a lesson that 
should not be lost to those who follow. The good man who pur- 
sues the even tenor of his way, not seeking the applause of men — 
always seeking to do the right thing at the right time and in the 
right way is the man who deserves a place in our history and we have 
carefully sought these characters that we might place their names m 
our Jefferson County History. "They have done what they could." 
It has been our desire to make this volume a prized treasure to 
this and succeeding generations because of the facts contained in it, 
and in view of this, we have gratefully accepted the aid given by 
many old timers, from their recollections of the "long ago." We 
have drawn liberally from the writing of our old-time friend. Dr. 
Adam C. Johnson, the old Jefferson county historian, without 
which this history would be incomplete. History cannot be 
changed and the only change we have made is to state the facts in 

our own simple way. Kindly thanking one and all for the assistance 
rendered, we can but breathe a fervent prayer that we may all 
meet in the grand reunion in the sweet beyond, where we may meet 
those noble spirits gone before and talk over "Old Times." away 
back in old Jefferson. "With malice toward none, but with charity 
for all," we herewith present the reader with the result of our labors 
in trying to bring the main features of Jefferson county history down 
to the present date. 

John A. Wall. 



A Dream 309 

Agricultural Societies 223 

Albright, J 112 

Anderson, Stinson H 58 

Appellate Court 103 

A Word to the Boys of Today.. 323 

Baker, John 116 

Bald Hill Township '. 1S8 

Banks and Banking 253 

Bar, The 103 

Barretts, The 233 

Barrett, Joshua P 2SV 

Baugh Family 87 

Beecher, Judge Edwin 107 

Benevolent Orders 160 

Bigotry vs. Fanaticism 32V 

Blair, William C 114 

Black Hawk War 113 

Blissville Township 187 

Building Materials 44 

Cahokias 20 

Carpenter, Robert 115 

Casey Family 79 

Casey, Lewis F 108 

Casey, Judge T. S 106 

Casey, Zadok 55 

Casner Township 186 

Child Lost 289 

Church History 143 

Civil War 121 

Clark, Col. George Rogers 21 

Clifford, Rev. Zenas 287 

Closing Scene 332 

Coal 42 

County Officers 48 

County Seat, Selection of 31 

Courts 103 

Crews, Seth P 109 

Cyclone, The 219 

Dodds Township 194 

Dry Summers 297 

Early Settlers 53 

Educational Statistics 141 

Egyptian Torchlight 166 

Eightieth Regiment 127 

Elk Prairie Township 192 

Exponent, The 168 

Farthing, Robert M 116 

Farrington Township 196 

Fairs, County 223 

Fergerson, J. E 232 

Field Township 193 

First Balloon in Jefferson County. 208 

First Public Buildings 33 

Formation of Jefferson County .. 24,, 

Formative Period 17 

Fortieth Regiment 123 

Forty-fourth Regiment 123 

Forty-ninth Illinois 125 

G. A. R., The 227 

Geology 41 

Gibson, Sam 232 

Government Experiment Station.. 325 
Government of Jefferson County.. 184 

Grand Prairie Township 185 

Grants to the Railroad 97 

Great Droughts 297 

Green, A. M 109 

Green, William H., Sr 108 

Green, William H 113 

Happenings From Way-Back 284 

Harriss, C. W 114 

Havnes, George M Ill 

Hicks, Col 112 

Hill, John H 286 

Historical Incident 213 


Historical Items ^'^0 

Hobbs, Thomas H 232 

Horticultural Societies 223 

Identity or Personality 32G 

mini ly 

Illinois Admitted to the Union . . 24 

Illinois Chronologically 25 

Improvements 35 

Irrigation 325 

Jefferson County 41 

Jefferson Democrat 169 

Johnson Family 83 

Johnston, Edward N 69 

Johnston. Noah 6') 

Joy, Rev. Epliriam ■. 286 

Oldest Settlers 

Old Settlers' Associations 

One on General Anderson 

One Hundred Tenth Regiment.. 


Ore, George L 

Organization of Jefferson County. 

Kaskaskia, Old 
Keller, C. A. . 


Last o£ the Mohicans 309 

Later Dates 276 

Leonard. George B 110 

Living Too Fast 324 

Location Jefferson County 41 

Love and the Law 267 

McAtee, Edward 23t) 

McClellan Township 192 

Maxeys. The •• . . . 82 

Medical Fraternity 201 

Merchants 237 

Mexican War 120 

Military History 118 

Mineral Resources 4^; 

Morrison, Bob 112 

More About Old Settlers 77 

Morn, Noon and Night 333 

Moore's Prairie Township 199 

Moss, Norman H 116 

Moss, Ransom 231 

Mound Builders 17 

Mount Vernon 33-37-62-70 

Mount Vernon's Guardian 166 

Mount Vernon's Great Cyclone . . 215 

Mount Vernon of Today 314 

Mount Vernon Township 194 

Mount Vernon 240 

Myths Exploded 263 

Nelson, Richard S 109 

News, The 167 

Nuggets Picked Up by the Way- 
side 284 

Old Folks' Reunion 225 

Pace Family 

Pace Family Reunion 

Pace, James M 

Pace, William T 

Patton, C. H 

Pavey, Gen. C. W. . . 

Peavler, Eugene 

Pendleton Township . 


Pierce, Jarvis 

Piercy, Norman A. . . . 

Pioneer School 


Pollock, James L. ... 
Pollock, James M. . . . 

Pollock, W. C 


Practical Abolition . . 

Preston, Finney 

Press, The 

Progressive Farmer . 
Public Buildings 



Roads, First 

Roll of Honor 

Roll of Honor Especial 

Rome Township 

Runaway Slaves 

Sacred Holidays 

Satterfield, Judge J. R. 

Satterfield, E. V 

Scates, Walter B 

Schools in the County 

Schools of the Present Day 

Schools in Town 

Schools in Mount Vernon 

Schul, Conrad 

Seat of Justice, The Permanent.. 

Second Court House 

Shiloh Township 

Sixtieth Regiment 

Smith, Kirby 

Social Converse 

Soil, Products, etc 

Soldiers' Reunions 

Spanish-American War 








Spring Garden Township 195 

Stratton, S. T 232 

Supreme Court lUS 

" Tanner, Tazewell B 105 

Telegraph and Telephone 246 

Temperance Work in Mount Ver- 
non 154 

Thatcher, John R 286 

The New Year 264 

Then and Now 314 

ToUe, James B 236 

Tribute to Woman 26b 

Tromley Family 233 

Turning Over a New Leaf 265 

Virginia Ceded to the United 
States IS 

Wall, John A 335 

War of 1812 118 

War for the Union 121 

Warrens, The 233 

Watson Family 85 

Watson, Albert 113 

Watson, Asa 296 

Watson, Joel F 113 

Water 43 

Webber Township 197 

Webb, A. D 114 

White, W. N Ill 

Wilbanks, R. A. D Ill 

Wright, Greenbury 112 


Allen, James A 494 

Allen, John R 412 

Arendale, D. H., M. D 446 

Arthurs, W. C 431 

Baugh, Joel V 440 

Beck, J. 615 

Blair, Hon. William C 560 

Bogan, John Stewart 408 

Bray, Harry F 421 

Brumbaugh, Beechworth 457 

Casey, Wesley B 500 

Chaney, W. S 532 

Cooper, Samuel D 590 

Emmerson, Louis L 508 

Fairchild, George Warren 605 

Farmer, Frank P 477 

French, Arthur T 592 

Gee, Isaac G., M. D 505 

Gilmore, Wilbur H 573 

Gilbert, Gale G 416 

Green, George E 583 

Green, Hon. William H 397 

Hall, Andy, M. D 518 

Ham, Christopher D 399 

Ham, Sidney Breese 38V 

Hamilton, J. W 577 

Harriss, Clarence W 471 

Hinman, Robert N 438 

Holstlaw, Thomas J 544 

Highsmith, George W 529 

Hutchison, John L 487 

Irvin, Grant 594 

Keller, Charlie R 404 

Kingman, H. R 571 

Marshall, B. A 581 

Marteeny, Elijah H 374 

Mathews, Thomas J 599 

Maxey, James C 356 

Maxey, James H 513 

Maxey, Moss, M. D 382 

Maxey, Walter S 372 

Maxey, William H 542 

Maxey, Capt. Samuel T 359 

Maynor, W^illis D 489 

Millspaugh, A. C 466 

Moss, Capt. John R 425 

Moss, Hon. Norman H 346 

Ore. George L 547 

Owen, William L 485 

Pace Family 339 

Pace, James M 342 

Pace, William T 343 

Patton, Charles H 391 

Pavey, Gen. Charles W 596 


Pavey, Louis G 575 

Peavler. Eugene M 585 

Peters, E. W 455 

Pettit, Jasper N 453 

Phillips. W. B 554 

Poole. Charles J 459 

Rainey. John L 496 

Reece, William C 534 

Reichel. Louis F 463 

Rivenburgh, Alexander 558 

Seed, Maurice J 367 

Schul, Conrad 388 

Simmons, Joseph W 503 

Snyder, Frank 449 

Stratton, Rynd L 612 

Tipton, John 523 

Turner, J. T 353 

Walker, Elbert M 491 

Ward. George F. M 515 

Watson. Fred P 601 

Watson. Hon. James H 536 

Watson, Samuel H 607 

Webb. Hon. Andrew Duff 567 

Webb. Williamson C 538 

Weber, R. K 525 

Welborn, Hon. George B 464 

Whitlock, John T., M. D 473 

Williams, Curtis 545 

Williams, Hon. William B 550 

Williamson. Thomas B., M. D. ... 476 

Willis, John J 540 

Willis, Wilton C 564 

Wilson, Albert 480 

Winn, James R 442 



Reaching Far Back of the Time When Illinois was Made a 
State of the Glorious Union. 

All life is toil; what is its fruitage? 
"Learn to labor and to wait." 

Many pages even of a county history might be taken up in 
giving the "history of the Wild," so to speak, but as our mission is 
to give a true and succinct History of Jefferson county, we shall 
but briefly refer to what took place in this "realm of Greatness," 
back of the coming of the white man, which may justly be called 
the Formative Period. The Mound Builders, no doubt, preceded 
the Indians in the occupation of this western country, but we have 
no knowledge of them, except that we have some mounds and the 
relics found in them still remain. Then the Indians — how long 
they were here before the country was discovered, we will not at- 
tempt to say. The first settlers aside from the Mound Builders and 
the Indians were the French, afterward the British and then the 
pioneer Americans. As the territory composing Jefferson county 
was not the abiding place of the Mound Builders nor the Indians, 
except as they roamed through the woods, we will not undertake 
to tell all about them, but will hasten on to the more important 
work in hand. 

At the breaking out of the Revolutionary war, the entire 

18 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

West was under British control. Patrick Henry, who was Gov- 
ernor of Virginia, gave General George Rogers Clark authority to 
recruit several companies of Americans to capture the northwest 
country, a big undertaking, but a big man in command of other 
big men to accomplish the task. He recruited his men in Kentucky 
and set out on his mission. He arrived at Kaskaskia, July 4, 1 778, 
and captured the fort and the town without the loss of a man. 
Assuring the French, who had a large church there, that they were 
at liberty to worship God as they pleased, they gladly took the 
oath of allegiance, and many of them joined Clark's band and 
went with him to capture Cahokia, which was speedily done. 
Clark then with his band threaded his way through the dense 
woods of Southern Illinois, to Vincennes on the Wabash, which 
was also captured. Clark's expedition is believed to have passed 
through what is now the southern part of Jefferson county, al- 
though there was no trail of any kind at that time. With the cap- 
ture of these three British posts, Illinois territory passed into the 
possession of Virginia. 

In 1874 Virginia ceded to the United States the Northwest- 
ern Territory, which embraced all the lands lying between the 
Ohio and Mississippi rivers, including Illinois. It embraced what 
is now the great states of Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Michigan. Wis- 
consin and the part of Minnesota lying east of the Mississippi river, 
and the Mississippi river was then the western border of the United 
States. This territory was called the "New Northwest," and in- 
cluded an area of one million eight hundred eighty-seven thousand 
and eight hundred and fifty square miles — greater in extent than 
the united areas of all the Middle and Southern states, including 
Texas. Out of this magnificent territory has been erected fifteen 
sovereign states and two territories, with an aggregate population 
at the present time of about twenty-five million inhabitants or nearly 


a third of the entire population of the United States, and wealth 
untold. See what wonderful possibilities confronted the early 
settlers as they came to this wild and wooly West! Of course vol- 
umes might be written about this great body of country, but we 
must hasten on. But, not without referring to the act of Congress 
organizmg the territory, excluding slavery and dedicating it to free- 
dom and free schools proclaiming that religion, morality and knowl- 
edge being necessary to good government and the happiness of 
mankind, schools and the means of knowledge shall ever be en- 
couraged. Even in the face of this a desperate effort was made to 
make Illinois a slave state, and for a while Illinois was the battle- 
field of the irrepressible conflict. The southern part of the state 
was largely made up of southerners and they considered the east- 
erners or Yankees as a skinning, tricky, penurious race of peddlers, 
filling the country with tinware, brass-clocks and wooden nutmegs. 
And the easterners, who crowded in the north part of the state, 
seemed to think the southerners as lean, lanky, lazy creatures, 
wanting slaves to do all their work — and here is where the "irre- 
pressible conflict" came in, but under the guiding hand of Provi- 
dence the "New Northwest," was forever dedicated to freedom. 
It is impossible to forecast the destiny of this grand and glorious 
section of the Union. Predictions made even now might seem 
twenty years hence so ludicrously small as to only excite derision, 
hence we leave it to the future historians to tell of its wonderful 

The name of this beautiful Prairie state is derived from Illini, 
a Delaware Indian word signifying "Superior Men," and we are 
not disposed to object to the imputation. The Indians occupying 
Southern Illinois when the white men came were the Delawares, 
the Kickapoos, the Shawnees and the Piankeshaws. None of 
these were especially savage or troublesome to our first settlers. 

20 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

Occasionally roving bands came in to hunt and trade. They carried 
their pelts to Shawneetown, Kaskaskia or St. Louis, bringing back 
articles which they traded to the whites. A great many Indians 
passed through the county, sometimes camping and hunting, but 
never remamed long at a time. 

The first European discoveries in what is now Illinois date 
back over two hundred years. Old Kaskaskia was settled as early 
as 1690 by the French, and Cahokia was inhabited even before 
that. Away back of this, in 1 682, Illinois was a possession of the 
French, and it was then that the French obtained such a foothold in 
the territory that the French and Indians were finally brought to 
war. In 1 765 the same territory was counted as a treasure of 
Great Britain, but a few years later. Gen. George Rogers 
Clark captured it from the British, and here we have the connecting 
link, or formative period, that brings Illinois and Jefferson county 
down from the Mound Builders to the Indians, from the Indians 
to the French, from the French to the British and from the British 
to Virginia, from Virginia to the United States and from the United 
States to itself — grand old Illinois, fifty-five thousand four hundred 
and ten square miles of territory — one hundred and ninety miles 
wide, four hundred miles long, stretching in latitude from Maine 
to North Carolina, embracing a climate that varies from the lakes 
on the north almost to the orange groves of the South — being a 
tableland from six hundred to one thousand two hundred feet 
above the sea — a free state without a peer. It is in the heart of 
the greatest valley in the world, the vast regions between the 
mountains — a valley that could feed mankind for a thousand years. 
It has sixty-five miles of frontage on the lakes — the fresh water 
seas of the north — the Father of Waters forming the entire 
western boundary, with the Ohio river on its southern boundary, 
and the Wabash river on the east, and the Illinois river and 


canal dividing the state diagonally from the lakes to the lower 
Mississippi, and embracing the Rock, Sangamon, Okaw, Skil- 
let Fork, Big Muddy and other streams, furnishing altogether 
two thousand miles of water front connecting and running 
through, in all about twelve thousand miles of navigable water, 
with miles of railroad more than any other state, with a soil full of 
bread and the earth rich with minerals — an upper surface of food 
and an under layer of fuel, and controlling the greatest grain, 
cattle, pork and lumber markets in the world, no wonder the people 
become infatuated with this glorious state of Illinois. We only re- 
gret that we cannot devote more time to its history, but it is so 
grand, so glorious that we feel impelled to carry it into the next 
chapter, and finish there. We have thus given a brief space to 
Illinois, because it is in name a little older than Jefferson county, 
and as a territory several years older, but in the beginning was Jef- 
ferson county all the same, the land, the prairie, the woodlands and 
the streams, just as when the pioneer came to live in it and make it 
bloom and blossom as the rose and it is the same Jefferson county 
today, notwithstanding a slight change in the personnel of her 


Colonel George Rogers Clark and his brave army of less than 
two hundred men left Kaskaskia February 7, 1779. They prob- 
ably passed near Breemen, Steeleville and Percy, entering Perry 
county and passing where Cutler, Bernard, Conant and Pinckney- 
ville now are, crossed into Jefferson county a few miles north of 
the southwest corner, passing near the Mound, where Waltonville 
is situated, carrying axes and felling trees to cross the streams as 
they went. They evidently passed the entire length of the territory. 

22 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

now composing the county, camped south of Mt. Vemon, perhaps 
near the Rogers ford; passed out of this county into Wayne 
county, near Kelns Skillet Fork; passed through Arrington Prairie 
near Jeffersonville and coming to what they called the "two Wa- 
bashesse," but evidently the junction of the Elm river with the Little 
Wabash, where they manufactured a big canoe and crossed the 
army, half dozen at a time. On the sixteenth they crossed the Bon 
Pass and entered Lawrence county at the southeast corner and 
finally crossed the Big Wabash near St. Francisville, and on the 
23d captured Vincennes without firing a gun. 

Just think of it, this patriotic intrepid American, with his one 
hundred and seventy-five braves in the dead of winter, traversing 
this wilderness, wading swamps, swimming streams, camping in the 
wildwoods, with no possibility of seeing or hearing of a human 
being, unless it be bands of savages, or perhaps wild beasts, making 
the trip without map or compass from Kaskaskia on the Mississippi 
river, to Vincennes on the Wabash, a distance of a little more than 
two hundred miles, and in doing so freed Illinois, from the domina- 
tion of not only the hated British, but from the savage red men, 
and the wild beast as well! The bloodless battles and results of 
the same — of Col. George Rogers Clark and his braves stand 
unparalleled in the history of warfare. 

And more wonderful still, that this brave man and his equally 
brave soldiers, should have trod the soil of old Jefferson county 
one hundred and thirty years ago, before any white man had ever 
passed this way — long before the Caseys, the Maxeys, the John- 
sons, and other pioneers had ever thought of coming into these 
virgin wilds. Truly, when men put themselves in the hands of 
Providence for the accomplishment of great purposes, wonderful 
results are sure to follow. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 23 

"God moves in a mysterious way. 

His wonders to perform, 
He plants His footsteps in the sea. 

And rides upon the storm. 

"Trust not the Lord by feeble sense. 
But trust Him for His grace; 
Behind a frowning Providence 
He hides a smiling face." 



Leading up to the Admission of the State of Illinois, and the 
Formation of Jefferson County and its Permanent Seat of Justice — 
Mount Vernon. 

"Flow on with ever widening streams. 
In every brightening morn. 
Our story's pride, our future's dream. 
Our hopes of times unborn." 

The establishment of a new empire, state or county, or even a 
town, a new and legal home for law-abiding people, always has 
a history peculiar to itself, and creates an abiding interest in the 
minds of those who read and think, and especially those who follow 
in the wake of advancing civilization. And so the settlement and 
civilization of our great Prairie state of Illinois (an empire within 
itself) and the various counties composing it, have an ever widening 
army of readers who desire to know the facts connected with the 
bringing in of the civilization, prosperity and great advancement 
which we now enjoy as a state and community. To impart and 
perpetuate this desired information, especially in regard to Jefferson 
county and Mount Vernon, its permanent seat of justice, is the 
mission of this book. 

Illinois, — even every school boy knows that our state of Il- 
linois was admitted into the Federal Union in 1818, and in the in- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 25 

tervening ninety years it has grown to be the third state in population 
and is excelled by none in all that goes to make up good citizenship, 
— in education, patriotism, the arts and sciences, in commerce, 
labor, manufactures and agriculture it is unexcelled. No wonder 
Illinoisans are proud of their great state, and heartily endorse the 
sentiment of the poet, who says : 

"Not without thy wondrous story, 
Illinois, Illinois. 
Could be told the Nation's glory, 
Illinois, Illinois. 

"On the record of thy years 

Abraham Lincoln's name appears, 
Grant and Logan, and our tears — 
Illinois, Illinois." 


1673 — Illinois river explored by Joliet. 

1675 — Kaskaskia Mission founded by Marquette — Claude Louez 

takes charge of same. 
1 680 — Ft. St. Louis erected by LaSalle on Starved Rock. 
1687 — LaSalle assassinated in Texas. 
I 700 — Cahokia Mission established. 
1 700 — Kaskaskia Mission moved to Kaskaskia. 
1717 — Illinois annexed to Louisiana. 
1 7 1 8 — Ft. Chartress built near Prairie de Rocher. 
1 720 — Renault introduces African slaves. 
I 754 — French and Indian war. 
1 758 — Ft. Massac erected by French. 

26 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

1763 — Illinois county and Canada ceded to English. 

1765 — Ft. Chartress surrenders to British. 

British rule Illinois from 1 765 to 1 778. 

1 768 — British court organized at Ft. Chartress. 

1 769 — Pontiac assassinated by Indian at Cahokia. 

1772 — Ft. Chartress abandoned and Kaskaskia made the capital 
of Illinois county. 

1775 — American Revolution begins. 

J778 — George Rogers Clark conquers the Illinois county for 
Illinois a county of Virginia. 

1 778 — Illinois county "created" by Virginia Legislature. 

1779 — Clark's expedition against Vincennes. 

John Todd made commandant, headquarters at Kaskas- 

1783 — Treaty of Peace with Great Britain, recognizes title of 
United States to Illinois. 

1784 — Virginia cedes Northwestern Territory to United States. 
Illinois under Territorial Government. 
Massachusetts cedes her claim to Illinois. 

1 786 — Connecticut cedes her claim to Illinois. 

1790 — Governor St. Clair visits Kaskaskia; St. Clair county or- 

1799 — General Assembly for Northwestern Territory. 
Illinois sends two delegates. 

1800 — Formation of Indiana territory, including Illinois. 

1804 — Land office located at Kaskaskia; Ft. Dearborn erected at 

1806 — Burr conspiracy. 

1809 — Illinois Territory organized; Ninian Edwards appointed 
first Governor. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 27 

1812 — First session territorial Legislature at Kaskaskia; massacre 
at Ft. Dearborn; Madison, Gallatin and Johnson coun- 
ties created. . 

1816 — Banks established at Shawneetown and Edwardsville. 

1817 — First steamboat ascends the Mississippi river above Cairo. 

1818 — Illinois admitted as a state; Shadrack Bond first Governor 
— First Assembly at Kaskaskia. 

1819 — Jefferson county formed; Legislature provides for selecting 
a new capital. 

1 820 — State Capital removed to Vandalia. 

1823 — First Vandalia state house burned; act for Constitutional 

1824 — Pro-slavery men try but fail to establish slavery. 

1825 — LaFayette visits Illinois; School Law passed. 

1827 — The first state institution — penitentiary at Alton. 

1829 — First college, at Jacksonville — The Illinois. 

1830 — Illinois is allowed three Congressmen. 

1832— Black Hawk war. 

1833 — Chicago incorporated as a village, and the Democrat, its 
first newspaper, started. 

1835 — McKendree and Shurtliff colleges incorporated. 

1836 — Old State House at Vandalia torn down and rebuilt — 
now the Vandalia court-house. 

1837 — Springfield made the permanent state capital. — Lovejoy 
killed at Alton by pro-slavery mob. 

1839 — First daily paper in Chicago — The American. 

1843 — Legislature held at Springfield; seven Congressmen. 

1846 — Lincoln elected to Congress; constitution carried. 

1850 — Illinois Central Railroad given the best lands in Illinois. 

1852 — Illinois, nine Congressmen. 

1856 — Republican party organized — Bissell the first Republican 
Governor elected. 

28 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

1 858 — Celebrated joint debates between Lincoln and Douglas. 
1860 — ^Abraham Lincoln elected President. 

1861 — Illinois, thirteen Congressmen — war declared against the 
Union by the Rebel States — Lincoln calls for volunteers, 
and four years of war follows. 
1872 — Illinois nineteen Congressmen. 
1 901 -Illinois twenty-five Congressmen. 

Events from 1875 to the present are too familiar with the 
people to be repeated here. These later years will furnish food for 
the next historian. 

How true, yet we esteem it a pleasure to go back of these men 
and these days and give honor to men and women who were equally 
patriotic and brave amid much less encouraging environments — 
the pioneers of our civilization. And while we hold up the first 
settlers of Jefferson county as ideals or models in the line of first 
citizens, or pioneers, we realize that they are but types of other early 
settlers of other counties of our beloved state of Illinois. Just a 
few explanatory words will bring us directly to our task. In 1 778 
the General Assembly of Virginia passed an act for "establishing 
the county of Illinois," and for "the more effectual protection and 
defense thereof." A clause of that act reads: "That all the citizens 
of this commonwealth, who are already settled or may hereafter 
settle on the western side of the Ohio or the eastern side of the Mis- 
sissippi rivers shall be included in a distinct county, which shall be 
called "Illinois County." By the provisions of the act, the Gov- 
ernor of Virginia appointed John Todd, a soldier and statesman. 
County Lieutenant or Commander in Chief of Illinois county, or 
in fact, the first civil governor of Illinois. Todd afterwards fell 
mortally wounded while fighting in a battle with the Indians. So 
it will be seen that Illinois was at that time a county of Virginia, a 
fact that is not generally known, by Illinoisans of today. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 29 

Upon the organization of the Northwestern Territory Gen. 
Arthur St. Clair was appointed Governor. In 1 790, in company 
with the territorial judges, he went to Cahokia, where, by proclama- 
tion he organized the county of St. Clair, the first individual county 
formed in what is now the great state of Illinois, and its seat of 
justice was Kaskaskia. Randolph was the next county created in 
Illinois, 1 795. At the session of the Territorial Legislature, 1811- 
12, Madison, Gallatin and Johnson were organized, and in 1814 
Edwards was formed; in 1816, White, Jackson, Monroe, Pope 
and Crawford were organized, and at the session of the next Legis- 
lature following, Franklin, Washington, Union, Bond and Wayne 
came into existence. 

At the first session after Illinois was admitted into the Union 
(1818), Jefferson county was formed, under the following act, en- 
titled "An Act for forming a separate county out of Edwards and 
White counties, approved," March 18, 1819: 

"Be it Enacted, etc., That all that tract of country within 
the following boundaries to-wit: Beginning where the line between 
ranges 4 and 5 last intersect the base line; thence west with said 
line to the third principal meridian, thence south twenty-four miles, 
thence east twenty-four miles, thence north to the place of begin- 
ning, shall constitute a separate county to be called 'Jefferson coun- 
ty,' and for the purpose of fixing the permanent seat of justice 
therein, the following persons are appointed commissioners: Am- 
brose Maulding, Lewis Barker, Robert Shipley, James A. Rich- 
ards and Richard Graham, which said commissioners or a majority 
of them being duly sworn before some judge or justice of the 
peace in this state, shall faithfully take into view the convenience of 
the people, the situation of the settlement, with an eye to the future 
population and eligibility of the place shall meet on the second 
Monday of May at the house of William Casey in said county. 

30 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

and proceed to examine and determine oft the place for the perma- 
nent seat of justice and designate the same ; provided the proprietor 
or proprietors of said land shall give to the county for the purpose 
of erecting public buildings a quantity of land not less than twenty 
acres to be laid out in lots and sold for that purpose ; but should the 
proprietor or proprietors refuse or neglect to make the donation 
aforesaid, then and in that case it shall be the duty of the said 
commissioners to fix some other place for the seat of justice as con- 
venient as may be to the inhabitants of said county which place 
fixed and determined upon, the Commissioners shall certify under 
their hands and seals and return the same to the next commissioners' 
court in the county aforesaid, which court shall cause an entry 
thereof to be made in their books of record, and until the public 
buildings be erected the courts shall be held at the house of William 
Casey, in said county. 

"Section 3. Be it Enacted, etc.. That the citizens of Jef- 
ferson county are hereby declared entitled in all respects to the 
same rights and privileges as are allowed in general with the other 
counties of this state. 

"Section 4. Ordered that Jefferson county should vote in 
conjunction with White county for members of the General As- 
sembly and section 5, says Jefferson county shall compose part of 
the second Judicial Circuit and courts shall be held therein at such 
time as specified by law." 

And a supplemental act said: That all that tract or part of 
county laying north of the county of Jefferson and west of Wayne, 
and not included in the limits of said countiesof Jefferson and Wayne 
established by the act to which this is a supplement, be one and the 
same, is hereby attached to and becomes a part of the said Jefferson 
county, and that the inhabitants thereof have and enjoy all the 
rights and privileges, as far as may be, that inhabitants of Jefferson 
have and enjoy. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 31 

March 30th, an act was passed authorizing Lewis Watkins to 
administer the required oaths to all officers of the county, and or- 
dering that an election for County Commissioners, Sheriff and Cor- 
oner be held on the 4th day of March or April. 

In pursuance to this act an election was held at the house of 
William Casey, which stood where the old Johnson House or brick 
hotel now stands; forty votes were cast and Zadok Casey, Joseph 
Jordan and Fleming Greenwood were elected Commissioners, and 
met at William Casey's June 7th, for the purpose of organizing — be- 
ing sworn in by Watkins. The court appointed Joel Pace County 
Clerk, and he gave bond of one thousand dollars with James Kelly 
and Isaac Casey, as securities, and now the court was ready for 

The selection of a seat of justice or county seat was first in 
order and the Commissioners appointed by the act quoted above for 
that purpose made their report as follows: Having been appointed 
by act of the General Assembly, to select and fix a seat of justice 
in and for Jefferson county, we, Lewis Barker, Ambrose Maulding 
and James A. Richardson, met at the house of William Casey for 
the purpose aforesaid, and after being duly sworn, proceeded and 
determined and settled upon the southwest quarter of section 29, 
range 3, of township 3, on the land owned by William Casey, the 
town to be laid off in the southwest corner of said quarter, to begin 
near the timber on a point not far distant from Casey's house, and 
thence to the foot of the descent on a point on which Casey's house 
stands, or in such manner as said County Commissioners shall 

Signed, by James A. Richardson, Ambrose Maulding and 
Lewis Barker, Commissioners. 

This report was accompanied by a paper signed by William 
Casey, in which he donated twenty acres of land to be laid off in 

32 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

town lots and sold for the purpose of paying for public buildings in 
the county of Jefferson, which twenty acres shall be laid off by the 
County Commissioners on land designated by the commissioners 
appointed to fix the permanent seat of justice for Jefferson county. 
N. B. — Provided that such commissioner shall lay off said 
town so as not to include said Casey's house and farm. 



The Name Chosen for the Seat of Justice — First Public 
Buildings, etc. 

"O, those blessed times of old! With their chivalry and 

their state; 
I love to read their chronicles, which such brave deeds 

relate ; 
I love to sing their ancient rhymes, to hear their legends told. 
But Heaven be thanked, I live not in those blessed limes 

of old." 

Thus was the county seat of Jefferson county fixed upon, and 
selected (in 1819 — nearly ninety years ago), and no doubt per- 
manently so, for no one would venture a prophecy of it ever being 
removed. At the time it was located there was a little dissatisfaction 
but none since. Isaac Hicks thought it ought to have been located 
at Post Oak Hill, which was a little nearer the center of the county. 
Other parties wanted it on or near the land where Oakwood ceme- 
tery now is. And complaint was made that one of the Commis- 
sioners, Lewis Barker, was the father-in-law of William Casey, 
and acted partially. But soon everybody admitted and everybody 
admits yet, that the selection was a good one, unsurpassed by those 
that were offered by other parties. Of course at that time it was 
difficult to .conceive what a real live town would look like in this 


34 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

virgin wild — as there was scarcely anything in sight but heavy tim- 
ber, and forests of under-brush, all to be cleared away by those 
hardy sons of toil, the pioneers of Jefferson county. 

For their services these commissioners were allowed, Mauld- 
ing, who lived near where McLeansboro now is, $8, and Rich- 
ardson, who lived near Carmi, and Barker, who owned the Cave- 
in-Rock Ferry, $12 each. 


At the first meeting of the County Commissioners' Court, it 
was resolved to build a court-house. It would be a curiosity to see 
it in our public square now, but people were not so numerous, pros- 
perous and proud as we are now. Its size was eighteen by twenty 
feet, built of hewed logs that faced ten inches, closely notched 
down, to have a good roof of boards, a plank floor closely laid ; to 
have one door and one window all done in a workman-like manner, 
to be completed and delivered to the Commissioners' Court at the 
next September term, said house to be built in the public square, 
the timber to be furnished by Isaac Casey and Joseph Jordon ; John 
Sanders' bid on the job was eighty-five dollars, and gave as bonds- 
man, James Kelley. On the ridge west of town the timbers were 
"got out" and the boards "rived." Henry Tyler hewed the logs 
secured on the lands of Isaac and William Casey and Joseph Jor- 
don. The building was ready for use in September as ordered by 
the court, whereupon John Sanders received an eighty-five dollar 
certificate for the same. It stood about where the present court- 
house stands, its one door facing south and its only window, west. 
As winter came on it was discovered that the house was too large 
to keep warm inside without fire; hence the court ordered that the 
finishing touch to the building, the adding of a fire-place, be let to 


0^ ■^^)' ,a'.'^*^^^ 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 35 

the lowest bidder, and this was the style of it : "A chimney place to 
be cut and a good chimney built, back and hearth to be like the 
one in the house of Lewis Watkins, and to be as good — an upper 
floor or loft of same plank to be closely laid and the cracks to be 
chinked and daubed with good mortar. Also, a platform, con- 
structed in the west end of the room, to be of proper height, four 
feet wide, of good hewed puncheons, to lack but three feet of 
reaching from one side of the house to the other; at the end of said 
platform, are to be the steps, composed of blocks or planks and a 
hand rail in front of the platforms of proper height and a seat in 
the rear of the platform (supposedly the seat of justice) and two 
seats in front, all to be made of good hewed puncheons. The plat- 
form to be supported by good substantial posts or pillars or blocks, 
to be completed by the first Monday in March, next, in workman- 
like manner. Oliver Morris undertook the job for eighty dollars, 
but when March came the Commissioners found the work but im- 
perfectly done, and forthwith docked the architect and builder five 
dollars, and he had to accept seventy-five dollars. And the court 
house complete cost Jefferson county what was then considered 
the exorbitant sum of one hundred and sixty dollars. Such was 
Jefferson county's first temple of justice. 


In 1 820 a stray pound and a log jail were ordered built on the 
lot where the jail now stands. This lot was sold to G. Greenwood 
at the first auction of lots to help put up pubic buildings, but he failed 
to pay for it, and it reverted to the county. John C. Casey took 
the contract for building the pound for thirty-three dollars eighty- 
seven and one half cents, and Burchett Maxey took the contract 
for building the jail for three hundred and twenty dollars more 

36 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

than twice as much as the court-house cost. Zadok Casey, who 
was then an extra hand with an axe, either in chopping or hewing 
"went partners" with Burchett Maxey and together with the assist- 
ance of Lewis and James Johnson and others got out the logs, two 
hundred of them, and had John Wilson haul them to the lot. De- 
cember 5th. of that year, Henry B. Maxey, who was the main build- 
er, turned the completed jail over to the court, and the work was 
endorsed and paid for. The platform provided for an upper story, 
was made by simply working in four logs four feet longer than the 
others, the projecting ends forming the platform — needing no sup- 
port, while the steps were two logs with steps cut in them, but the 
work was substantial and satisfactory. Afterward the log jail was 
torn down and rebuilt just east of the court-house, in the square, 
and many now living remember seeing it there. The writer remem- 
bers when a boy, of accompanying A. M. Grant, who was the jailor 
there, to feed the inmates. He also remembers of carelessly (per- 
haps intentionally) letting a kind-hearted old slave, who had 
been taken up and posted as a stray or runaway, get away and 
pursue the road to freedom. 

Next the court let to John Wilkinson the building of another 
hewed log house, to be used as a Clerk's office, for which, when 
completed, they paid William Casey forty-one dollars, William 
Jordon two dollars and twenty-five cents, Henry B. Maxey. four 
dollars, and John Wilkinson twelve dollars thirty-seven and one- 
half cents, making the Clerk's office cost fifty-nine dollars sixty-two 
and one-half cents, but it took one dollar more to purchase a pad- 
lock and chain with which to lock up the records. Safety was se- 
cured by putting the chain through an augur hole iti the door and 
around the facing through a chink in the logs and pad-locking the 
ends together. 

So much for Jefferson county's first public buildings — consti- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 37 

tuting at that time about half of the entire town. In the court- 
house Burchett Maxey hved while he built his own house and in 
the Clerk's office, Joel Pace spent the last years of his single and the 
first years of his married life here. It was here that he lived when 
Harvey T. Pace came from Kentucky and split three thousand 
rails for Joel at fifty cents per hundred in state paper, equal to 
twenty-five cents in specie. Harvey boarded with his Uncle Joel, 
and fourteen feet square proved big enough for him and Joel's 
family besides, and also for the Circuit and County Clerk's office. 
For many years Joel Pace held both of these offices and dis- 
charged the duties well. 


Mount Vernon was chosen by the coirmiissioners as the name 
of the new county seat of justice, although Mount Pleasant was 
first proposed and favorably considered, but the name of Washing- 
ton was greatly revered by the citizens, and Mount Vernon, his an- 
cestral home, prevailed as the county seat of Jefferson county. Joel 
Pace was ordered by the court to contract with a surveyor to lay off 
the twenty acres, donated by William Casey, extending from Har- 
rison street on the north to Jordon street, on the south, and from 
Casey street (now Eleventh street), on the west to Johnson street 
or alley, first street east of the public square. The lots numbered 
forty-eight, lying in eight squares, three squares each way, and one 
to the county, but nothing was said about blocks in the survey. The 
surveyor was William Hosick from — perhaps, Shawneetown. In 
September it was ordered that Joel Pace and William Casey be 
and are hereby employed to set Mulberry stakes around the public 
square, one at each corner, to drive all the stakes in the town and 
also to number the lots for which they are to be paid by the county. 

38 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

the sum of five dollars. On the day of the sale the services of J. 
E. Davis, a Cumberland Presbyterian preacher, was secured to cry 
the sale. 

"Oh, yes, gentlemen, I am now gomg to sell you some lots in 
the beautiful city of Mount Vernon, all covered with a beautiful 
coat of green, but destined to be covered with beautiful blocks of 
magnificent buildings."- — How phophetic. 

Lot No. I , was struck off to Bennett Maxey for forty-one 
dollars; No. 2 to Barton Atchison; Burchett Maxey bought No. 
4, south of Herman's, where he built a log house; Lewis Watkins 
took the Joel Pace corner at one hundred sixty-two dollars and 
fifty cents; Nelson Ferguson took what is now the Ham's bank 
corner, one hundred and sixty-five dollars; Clark Casey, the Bond 
corner for one hundred and sixty dollars; Thomas Jordon, the lot 
where the Economy store now is; Doctor McLean, who afterwards 
located at McLeansboro, bought the Harvey Pace corner, where 
the third National Bank is, for one hundred and thirty-six dollars, 
with Isaac Casey as security. He failed to pay for it and Isaac 
passed it over to Burchett Maxey. J. E. Davis, the preacher who 
cried the sale of the lots, came in with a colony of Casey's and 
Maxey's in 1818. His wife was a sister to Burchett and Elihu 
Maxey's wives, and to James Bowman's and John Afflack's wives, 
all being daughters of John Taylor, of Wilson county, Tennessee. 
Of those who bought the original lots, Bennett Maxey was the son 
of William Maxey and brother to Joshua C. and J. P. Maxey, and 
was the father of William H. and James J., Charles C, Joshua C, 
Jr., and Thomas J.; also of Mrs. Emily Ray and Mrs. Eliza 
White; William and Edward were brothers from Virginia. Wil- 
liam married Rhodam Allen's sister, Emily, and was the father of 
Henry B., Bennett Nelson, Elisha, Charles, Hardy, Joshua Can- 
non. William McKendrie, Adney and John, also of Mrs. Clar- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 39 

issa Johnson, Mrs. Harriet and Mrs. Vilinda Casey and Hostil- 
lina; Edward married Elizabeth Pitner, came to Kentucky and 
thence to IHinois, in 1819, was a Methodist and raised no children, 
but adopted Judge J. R. Satterfield. Barton Atchison was from 
Georgia, married a Hill, sister to Mrs. Wilkey and Mrs. Dempsey 
Hood, came to this county in 1816, and was much in public life. 
His sons were William, Ignitius, Samuel, George and the daughters, 
Winnie Myers, Martha Chaffin and one, the wife of Theophilus 
Cook, Jr., Nelson Ferguson, came and stayed one year and went 
back to Tennessee. His wife was a sister of Jordan Tyler. Clark 
Casey, John C, was a son of Abraham P., and son-in-law of Isaac 
Casey; came in 1818, and built a cabin on Mulberry Hill, south- 
west of town, lost his wife and married a Bingaman, went to Mis- 
souri, came back and died in 1862. Lewis Watkins was at the 
front some years, first in Moore's Prairie, then in Mount Vernon, 
finally returning to Tennessee, leaving his daughter, Mrs. Green P. 
Casey here. She was the mother of Lewis F. Casey. Henry Tyler 
was the son of John Tyler and John was a half-brother of James 
and Lewis Johnson. Henry married Isaac Casey's daughter, 
Catherine. He lived on the Centralia road for many years. John 
C. and Isaac Tyler were sons of Mrs. Ingram. Oliver Morris was 
son-in-law to Joseph Jordan. He built a brick house in Moore's 
Prairie as early as 1823. John Wilkerson married Dicy Keelin. 
in Virginia; she died and he married Mrs. Thomas, sister of 
Rhodam Allen and to William Maxey's wife. Mrs. Thomas by 
her first husband had five children; Mrs. Thad Moss's grandfather. 
Aunt Polly Parker and Edward Wilkinson's wife were three of 
them. This much for some of the very first settlers and builders of 
Mount Vernon. 

Having discerned the discoverers of Jefferson county, and be- 
come slightly acquainted with the "locaters and fixers" of the per- 

40 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

manent seat of justice for the county as a starting point, we shall 
now launch out in search of the other unseen, and to a very large 
extent, unknown facts about the county and its inhabitants. 



Why SO Named — Its Location — Formation — Its Geology — 
Soils, Products, etc. 

"Our father's God, from out whose hand 
The centuries fall like grains of sand. 
And into common good ordain 
This rivalship of hand and brain." 

Jefferson county, so called in honor of Thomas Jefferson, the 
third President of the United States, and the reputed writer and 
signer of the Declaration of Independence. As designated by 
Legislative act, it is situated southeast of the intersection of the old 
Ohio & Mississippi (now Baltimore & Ohio Southwestern) Rail- 
road, and is bounded on the north by Marion county, on the 
east, by Wayne and Hamilton counties, on the south, by Franklin 
county, on the west by Washington and Perry counties, and has an 
area of five hundred seventy-six square miles. When it was "first 
attacked" by the settlers, about four-fifths of the, territory was tim- 
ber land, and one-fifth prairie, the latter being the elevated levels 
between the watercourses, having considerable depth of quarternary 
deposits, sometimes underlaid with shale, but it is seldom that rock 
is found ; however, some timber hills are found in the prairies, as in 
Knob Prairie, underlaid with rock. The timbered land is partly 
flat, but most of it is undulating or broken in consequence of the 

42 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

many watercourses which traverse the county in different directions. 
It has some post-oak and some barrens with black oak, white oak, 
and also hickory. The timber in the creek bottoms was quite 
heavy, swamp-oak, water oak, sugar maples, sycamore, black and 
white walnut, etc. The county is well supplied with branch water, 
(when it rains) is traversed by branches of the Big Muddy and their 
tributaries. The main branch of the Big Muddy heads near the 
northwest corner of the county and handles all the water on the 
west side of the county. In the northeast part of the county is 
Horse creek, a tributary to the Skillet Fork, and Little Wabash, 
and it has been said that the rain falling east of Marlow Hills runs 
into the Wabash and the Ohio rivers, while that falling west runs 
into the Big Muddy and the Mississippi rivers. Usually we have 
all the water we need in the county, but last year everything went 
dry, including the streams, cisterns, ponds and saloons. 


The geological formation of Jefferson county, like those around 
us, are members of the coal formation. Nearly all over the county 
is found the same strata traced over in Marion county, a coal seam 
which varies from six to twenty-four inches in thickness. At a 
greater depth may be found the coal bed and the sand stone over- 
laying it, have been traced over a large area of the outcrop of coal, 
and attains considerable but variable thicknesses. But little lime- 
stone crops out in the county and that generally between two bodies 
of sandstone, of which there is more or less in all parts of the 
county. Almost anywhere single layers of sandstone of sufficient 
hardness can be found for building purposes. The coal near the 
surface in this county is the same as the vein at Central City. Much 
of this surface coal has been mined and they pronounce it excellent. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 43 

The only drawback is thickness, or rather, the shallowness of the 
veins. It could not be mined at all but for its closeness to the sur- 
face. The question as to whether a lower coal bed of workable 
thickness has been settled by the sinking and successful working of 
the Mount Vernon coal shaft for the past fifteen years, although the 
vein being worked is eight hundred and fifty feet below the surface. 
The vein is about six feet thick and the coal of a good average 
quality. The shaft was put down by some enterprising citizens of 
the town, who as is usually the case received no reimbursement for 
their expenditures, but they were public benefactors just the same, 
and will be given due credit in another part of this book. Jefferson 
county is underlaid with a good workable vein of coal, the only 
drawback being its great depth, but even that is being overcome by 
our improved machinery. Coal on top and coal on the bottom, so 
our people are not likely to run short of fuel for many years, not- 
withstanding the county is largely bared of its forests. There is 
some iron ore in this county, but not in quantities to make it valuable 
for the production of iron. 


The underneath water for the most part may be called good 
well water, but in localities it is somewhat salt, originating, no doubt, 
from the decomposition of the sulphate of iron contained in the 
coal or shales. As the coal seams are near the surface in many 
places, wells frequently contain these salts in quantities sufficient to 
ruin the water for household purposes. This occurs partly in Mount 
Vernon and Rome townships, and in the south part of the county. 
The strongest mineral water perhaps to be found in the county is 
in the the Green Lawn Springs in Mount Vernon, which were a 
few years ago a popular resort, but of late years have been aban- 
doned. These springs, three in number, issue from the side of a 

44 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

shallow ravine at the same level, a few feet from each other. The 
springs all contain a considerable quantity of iron, combined with 
salts. A remarkable fact is that the waters of each are different, but 
the difference may be in the relative quality of salts. They evi- 
dently emanate from the same stratum, but passing through different 
portions of rock, the water may come in contact with different 
mineral substances. But one spring, which Doctor Green called the 
"Tepid Spring," differs from the others in that the water is warmer, 
not freezing in winter, but perhaps the fact may be attributed to its 
saline character. 


Building materials were plentiful up to within a few years ago. 
Plenty of hard sandstone for foundations, clay from which to man- 
ufacture brick, and timber from which anything from a cradle to a 
home big enough to hold a big family and all your wife's relations 
including your mother-in-law, could be safely housed. For many 
years there was plenty of workable timber. Ash, white and black 
oak, post oak, black walnut, hickory and cherry, etc., but alas! 
where are they now? The growth of timber was immense and the 
only problem that seemed to confront the settler was "How shall we 
get rid of it?" The surplus timber seemed to be the bane of their 
lives, and "cut and slash" wherever one pleased, was the order of 
the day. The woods and fields used to be illuminated by the burn- 
ing of logs, simply to get rid of them. These same logs today 
would be worth many dollars each. It seemed that the timber 
never would be cleared away, notwithstanding everybody in those 
days used only wood for fuel, building, fencing and nearly every- 
thing else. "Woodman, spare that tree," was never heard or 
thought of in those days. The result is today that we find nearly 
all of our farms entirely denuded of timber, not even enough for 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 45 

firewood. After the coming of the railroads, this vicious timber 
slaughter became more contagious and the whole population felt at 
liberty to chop down any and everything that would make a rail- 
road tie or a mine prop. Reckless mankind destroyed in a few 
years grand groves of trees that nature was centuries in making. 


The pioneers understood far better than we do that everything 
used by mankind in any line whatever— whether as food or raiment, 
or in the arts and sciences, in the manufactures, in the commerce, in 
the household, and in all the world, is simply and purely the product 
of the soil — of Mother Earth; and what a mother she is! The 
corner stone upon which all life rests is the farm, the miner — the 
digger in the earth, for everything must be dug out before it is usu- 
able. From the earth comes all life, all beauty, all pleasure, 
wealth and enjoyment. So, at the coming of the pioneer to Jeffer- 
son county, the virgin soil welcomed him, even as a bride welcomes 
the groom. They found the soil deep and strong, with fertility of 
the centuries resting upon it, not as deep as the soil in the corn belt 
further north, but well adapted to the growth of all the grains, 
vegetables and fruits, which was not so true of the lands further 
north. They simply "tickled" the earth with the hoe and it gave 
in return vegetables, grain and fruit showers. The permanent effect 
of the soil on the people is as pronounced as upon the vegetation 
that springs from it and in these early pioneers we read the result of 
how good the soil was then, and it would be as good now as then, 
had all the farmers treated it with more kindness and consideration 
— had they fed it while it fed them. Since then, we are sorry to say, 
some of our Jefferson county farms have literally been "worked 
and "starved" to death, by being "corned" and "wheated" for half 

46 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

a century at a time, without ever having received a pound of fer- 
tilizer or manure in return for what it has yielded the proprietor. 
Remember this maxim: "While the land feeds the eater, let the 
eater feed the land." We are glad to know that many of our Jeffer- 
son county farmers are acting on this humane plan, and that their 
lands are increasing in fertility and price. Many farmers in Central 
and Northern Illionis, who are farmmg on land, the market price of 
which is from one hundred and fifty to two hundred dollars per 
acre, are selling and buying land here that will raise anything they 
want for from forty to sixty-five dollars per acre, leaving them a neat 
banking fund and plenty of products from their new farms to live on, 
beside getting a more agreeable climate for themselves and stock. 
Farm life is becoming more agreeable than it was a little while back. 
Let the good work continue, do something to keep the "boys'* 
"down on the farm," which will be better for the "old folks at 
home " and much better for the "boys." 



First by Commissioners and Organized into Civil Divisions for 
Voting Purposes. Finally Organized into Townships. 

Courage! There is none so poor — 
None of all who wrong endure — 
None so humble, none so weak 
But may flush his father's cheek. 
And his maiden's, dear and true. 
With deeds that he may do. 
Be his days as dark as night 
He may make himself a light. 
What though sunken be his sun — 
There are stars when day is done. 

One of the first acts of the County Commissioners was the lay- 
ing of the county into civil divisions. At first it was divided into 
two districts or townships called respectively "Moore's Prairie" and 
"Casey's Prairie." In 1820 Walnut Hill Precinct was formed. 
It included all of Marion and Jefferson counties north of the line 
dividing townships 1 and 2, south. Then the next change we find 
in the civil divisions is in June, 1 832, when Grand Prairie precinct 
was formed. It was in the northwest part of the county, eight miles 
square, the voting place being Poston's Mill. In June, 1834. Horse 
Creek precinct was laid off. It extended seven miles from the east 

48 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

line of the county and was bounded north by the county hne and 
south by the Fairfield road — voting place being Frank Haney's. 
Gun Prairie precinct was formed in 1835, beginning where the "New 
Hurricane" crossed the west line of the county, run with the hurricane 
to Morgan's Mill; to S. Toney's and W. Toney's to the edge of 
Moore's Prairie, and to the south line of the county — voting place, 
house of William King. The next precinct was Long Prairie, 
bounded on the west by Middle Fork and Muddy river, and the 
Grand Prairie road — voting place, H. Hick's house. In 1846 Elk 
Prairie precinct was formed. Its bounds were from the mouth of 
Dodd's creek to Mendenhall's quarry, west to Middle Fork, and 
to the county line, then up the creek to the place of beginning — 
voting place, J. Kelley's. At the same time New Moore's Prairie 
precinct was formed, including township 4, range 4 — voting place 
at Wilbanks. Then for many years the business of the county 
moved on under the old precinct system. The first Board of Com- 
missioners was composed of Zadok Casey, Fleming Greenwood and 
Joseph Jordan, and under this system of commissioners (three in 
number) , the business of the county was conducted until 1 869, when 
township organization was voted in, and the county was laid off 
into sixteen townships, each six miles square. Under the precinct 
system, county officers changed but seldom, but managed to succeed 
themselves, but under township organization, the county officers 
changed oftener and the township officers change every year, evi- 
dencing the fact that the people rule. 


County Clerk. — Joel Pace was both County Clerk and Circuit 
Clerk, and held the office from 1819 to 1837, when Noah Johnson 
was chosen County Clerk. He was succeeded by E. H. Ridgway, 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 49 

who held both offices until 1845, when Joel F. Watson was chosen. 
In 1857 W. Dodds came in; in 1865, C. H. Patton; 1869. W. 
Dodds; 1871, J. N. Satterfield; 1873, W. H. Smith; 1877, J. N. 
Satterfield; 1881, two terms, A. C. Tanner; 1893, C. D. Kell; 
1897, John R. Piercy; 1902, William B. Phillips, the present 

Circuit Clerk. — E. H. Ridgway succeeded Joel Pace, as Cir- 
cuit Clerk in 1841 ; he by John Wilbanks in 1848, and he by T. B. 
Tanner in 1852. He resigned and John S. Bogan took the office 
in 1 854, and held it until 1 888, when W. A. Davis came in. In 
1892, W. V. Satterfield took the place, died in office and J. F. 
Bogan filled out the term. Then L. E. Jones and then C. A. 
Keller; then George W. Highsmith and then Burl Hawkins, the 
present incumbent. 

Sheriffs. — Lewis Watkins, the first Sheriff, was succeeded by 
W. L. Howell; in 1824, Nicholas Wren came in; James Bowman 
in 1828, who served until 1842, when W. J. Stephenson was chosen 
Sheriff and served until 1848. He was succeeded by Wiley Piper; 
1850, J. R. Satterfield; 1852, William Dodds; 1854, J. R. Allen; 
1856, James Wescott; 1858, John Bagwell; 1860, C. G. 
Vaughn; 1862, J. B. Goodrich; 1864, C. G. Vaughn; 1866, Wil- 
ham Dodds; 1868, W. E. Coffey; 1870. three terms, J. B. Good- 
rich; 1876, two terms, George W. Yost; Sam Cooper one term; 
then Thomas M. Gray, succeeded by John R. Ward, T. E. 
Manion, S. S. Howe, and the present incumbent. Grant Irvin. 

County Treasurers. — The first Treasurer of Jefferson county 
was James Kelly, who perhaps handled a couple of dozen dollars 
during his term. He was succeeded by Edward Maxey; he by 
John Wilbanks ; he by Joseph Pace ; he by S. Goddard, he by J. 
Livingston, he by G. P. Casey; he by H. B. Newby, and A. B. 
Watson, John H. Watson, W. Hicks, S. W. Jones two terms; W. 

50 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

H. Smith; C. D. Ham, G. L. Cummins, C. W. Lindley, J. F. Car- 
roll, W. A. Davis, F. E. Patton, T. H. Mannen, S. T. Hirons, S. 
H. Watkins, W. B. Williams, and Wilton C. Willis, the present 

County Judges.— Until the adoption of township organization, 
the presiding officer of the Board of County Commissioners was the 
County Judge or Probate Justice and this position was filled about 
twenty-five years by Judge Satterfield, who has figured so extensive- 
ly in the management of Jefferson county affairs. After Satterfield 
the Board of Commissioners passed out, and the county judgeship 
stood on its own merits, Jared Foster being elected County Judge, 
and those succeeding him were Judges C. A. Keller, W. B. Ander- 
son, William T. Pace, Robert M. Farthing, J. D. Norris, Con. 
Schul and A. D. Webb, our present County Judge. 

School Commissioners, or Superintendents, as they call them 
now — Browning Daugh is the first we have any account of. ap- 
pointed in 1836; J. R. Satterfield came next in 1845; then came 
John H. Pace, W. H. Lynch, J. H. Pace, J. R. P. Hicks. Office 
changed to School Superintendent, and James M. Pace was 
chosen, followed by G. W. Johnson, John D. Williams, William 
T. Summers, Oscar Stitch, J. W. Hill and A. E. Summers, the pres- 
ent mcumbent. 

County Surveyors. — The first elected Surveyor was Lewis F. 
Casey, who served for many years. He was followed by W. B. 
Anderson. A. M. Grant, John D. Williams, W. T. Williams, B. 
C. Wells, Kirby Smith, James Westcott, S. T. Maxey, and B. 
C. Wells, just elected. 

Jefferson county adopted township organization in 1869, and 
the first Board of Supervisors were elected in 1870; Jacob Breeze, 
Grand Prairie; E. B. Harvey, Casner; Samuel Johnson, Bliss- 
ville; John B. Ward, Bald Hill; G. L. Cummins, Rome; J. R. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 51 

Moss. Shiloh; William A. Davis. McClellan; G. W. Evans, Elk 
Prairie; John C. McConnell. Fields; D. H. Warren. Mount Ver- 
non; R. D. Roan. Dodds; W. S. Bumpus. Spring Garden; M. A. 
Morrison. Farrington; S.V.Bruce, Webber; W.A.Jones Moore's 
Prairie. The county has had many good Boards of Supervisors 
since that day. Township organization has become quite popular 
with the people of the county, as it seems to be more nearly a home- 
rule government than the old commissioner system, and yet it costs 
considerably more. Since the county was fully organized, officers 
have mainly been brought out by party machinery, each party pre- 
senting its candidates through caucus or primary. Sometimes In- 
dependents slip in. but usually the successful ones are old party 
nominees, sometimes one, sometimes the other. 

During all this organization period, Joel Pace was officially 
part of the organization itself, and it seems proper that we here 
record "what manner of man" he was. Born in Virginia, he moved 
with his father to Kentucky. On reaching manhood, Joel went to 
Frankfort, Kentucky, where he worked for Thomas Long. The 
latter had a brother, Billy, merchandising in Vincennes, Indiana. 
Riley asked Thomas to refer him to a trusty young man who would 
make a good salesman. He recommended Joel Pace, and Riley 
employed him and sent him to Vincennes. Here he remained two 
years, when Riley had a stock of goods damaged by the sinking 
of a boat in the Ohio river, and he sent young Pace to sell them 
out as best he could at Shawneetown. Riley abandoned himself 
to drink and Joel left him and worked for Peoples & Kirkpatrick. 
at Shawneetown. Judge Brown, who was then "Judge of the 
Realm." then lived at Shawneetown, and he appointed Joel Pace 
Circuit Clerk of Jefferson county, and procured for him the ad- 
ditional offices of Recorder and Notary Public. So he had three 
offices when he came here in 1819. and was soon appointed to the 

UNrvERsnv ( 


52 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

forth office, County Clerk. And yet there was so Httle business 
that he attended to the duties of them all, and still found time to 
teach a school, the first ever taught in the county. Such was the 
"make-up" of the man, who at one and the same time held several 
of the most important offices of the county, for about twenty years, 
discharging faithfully his official duties. And it is always the 
pleasure of the historian to record the doings of a faithful public 
official. The early officers of the courts were efficient and faithful, 
but none of them wore official honors so long and faithfully without 
rest as did Joel Pace. He was in every respect an ideal pioneer, 
and Jefferson county is proud of his memory. The scramble for 
the "loaves and fishes" of the county was "light and airy" as com- 
pared with the strenuous work along that line in later years. The 
most lucrative offices of the county were filled by appointment and 
not by popular vote, as now, until about 1 840. The early records 
show few changes, the appomtmg powers seeming to agree with 
Chancellor Kent, who said: "The great danger to this county is the 
too freqent change of men who prove themselves faithful in office." 
All organizations have weak spots, and so with the organiza- 
tion of Jefferson county, but these weak spots were gradually 
"chinked" and "daubed," as the pioneers did their cabins, and were 
finally "cut out," and supplanted with better things and modes, until 
now we have one of the best organized, even running counties in 
this great and glorious state. We have not the room to give the 
organization of townships more space in this chapter, but may de- 
vote a chapter to that later. Havmg started the county machinery, 
we will go back and see what was the real character of our first 



Their Characteristics — Zadok Casey — Stinson H. Anderson. 

Through toil and trouble, happiness and love, 

Weariness and woe, in the mills of earth, 

The tools of eternity are working. 

It is their noise we hear in the city's dull roar; 

Their keen edge we feel when we smart with some 

strange pain. 
Here is making that which is finer than anything 

that can be cut in marble. 
The glory of character. 

"Our lives are songs; God writes the words. 

And we set them to music at pleasure; 

And the song grows glad, or sweet, or sad. 

As we choose to fashion the measure. 

We must write the music, whatever the song. 

Whatever its rhyme or meter; 

And if it is sad, we can make it glad, 

Or if sweet, we can make it sweeter." 

The first settlements of Jefferson county were made under 
great difficulties, and amid hardships and dangers. Most of the 
settlers were from the states south of the Ohio river, and were poor 

54 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

in worldly wealth — called by some "poor white trash." But while 
they had but little education, and comparatively no wealth, they 
were men and women of sterling worth — physically stalwart and 
strenuous, looking upon labor as an honor, and a glory, which 
nothing could be accomplished without. They recognized that 
there was a vast difference between reputation and character — that 
character is what a man is ; reputation is what he is thought to be ; 
that character is real — that reputation may be and often is, false; 
that character is what you are at home ; that reputation is what you 
are abroad; that character is a man's soul; that reputation is that 
which is in the minds of others; that character is a man's worth, 
while reputation is the price placed on him by others. Such were 
the pioneers of Jefferson county. They came with faith in God, 
and a wish to do right as a basic thought. Believig that 

"Life was lent for noble deeds." 

They concentrated their energies upon the work before them 
with a full knowledge that they would have to "labor and to wait." 
They realized that labor is mighty and beautiful, and that the 
noblest men on earth are those who put their hands cheerfully and 
promptly to honest labor. They realized that there is not an atom 
of useful material in all the world that is not made useful by the 
brain and brawn of labor. And added to this the dignity of labor 
which predominated in the minds of these people, which was deeply 
imbedded in their hearts, and the never dying principles of charity 
and love which shone out through their every day lives like "apples 
of gold in pitchers of silver," never to be forgotten. Charity always 
flows from a good heart, and looks beyond the skies for approval 
and reward — it is only another name for disinterested love — the 
same feeling that bequeathed to this sad world "The Great Sym- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 55 

pathizer and Lover," who "went about doing good to others" 
while on earth. So these first good citizens beheved in doing unto 
others as they wished others to do unto them, and not one of them 
practiced the Irishman's golden rule — "do to others as they do to 
you, and do it first, " or "do" others before they "do" you. They 
seemed to remember that love is the perpetual melody of humanity 
— it glorifies the present by the light that comes backward and 
lightens the future by its gleams of hope sent forward. It elevates 
the aspirations, expands the soul and stimulates the mental powers. 

Such were the characteristics of our Jefferson county 
"Fathers." A noble people, and the virgin soil here afforded them 
a splendid heritage. And by their labors, their piety and their mode 
of living, they have certainly made it more glorious for descendants, 
who today, with thousands of others, are enjoying the "fruits" of 
their labors, while they have entered into the rest they so richly de- 
served. "They builded better than they knew." As they built 
their cabins they could not see the handsome residences, stores and 
factories that should occupy the same ground in the not very distant 
future. It would be a wonderful experience if they were to come 
back today and try to locate their cabins and truck patches, but why 
go to dreaming "while life is real," and such is life. 

It would be a pleasure to individualize noble men and women, 
and give each their due mead of praise, in due season, but a dozen 
volumes would not hold it all. Suffice it, that we give in this 
chapter a brief synopsis of the lives and characters of just two of 
our pioneers who were ideal characters and who were not only at 
the front in all local matters, but who became state and national 
figures in their day and generation. They left their impress upon 
Jefferson county for all time to come. First, then, we come to 

Zadok Casey, who came to Jefferson county in the spring of 
1817, and reared a cabin in Shiloh township, the place known as 

56 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

Capt. J. R. Moss's homestead, near Shiloh church. He was bom 
in Georgia, in 1 796, and at the early age of nineteen, was married 
to a daughter of Samuel King. From the pioneer sketches of Mr. 
Johnson and others, we give some facts of his early life and labors 
in this, his adopted county. Soon after his marriage he began to 
preach, and best of all he kept it up through his long and useful life, 
even in the midst of his heated political campaigns, in which he en- 
gaged. He was as poor as poverty itself, and after his father died 
he had all the care of his mother as well as that of his own family. 
Arriving here in 181 7, he went into camp beside a big log, with his 
mother and family until he could rear his cabin. There was no one 
near to help him raise a big log cabin, so he put up one of poles, 
made a floor of puncheons, a door of clapboards, beds of scaffolds, 
and boards, and with a dirt hearth, a stick chimney, and a skillet 
and shovel, and commenced living at home out in Shiloh. He was 
one of the men described in the first part of the chapter, and soon 
there was evidence of thrift and improvement about the plantation. 
He was a diamond in the rough. By the aid of his wife he soon 
learned to read, and his natural thirst for knowledge soon led him 
to accumulate a small library and he eventually became the best 
posted man in all the region round about. When things began to 
stir down at the seat of justice, Zadok would walk down and help 
the boys out, but he never forgot to preach on all proper occasions, 
and it is said of him that he invited every man, woman and child in 
the county to come to the grove standing on what is now Bond's 
corner (and every one of them was there) to hear him preach 
what proved to be an excellent sermon. 

But very few moments of idleness were spent by Mr. Casey 
after arriving in the county. As already stated he was one of the 
first Board of Commissioners, and helped in organizing the town 
and county. In 1 820, young as he was, he was pitted against Doc- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 57 

tor McClean, of White county, for the Legislature, but was de- 
feated by a few votes, but at the next election, in 1822-24, he was 
elected to the State Senate for four years. So great was his popu- 
larity that he carried every vote in the county but one. In 1830 
he was elected Lieutenant Governor of the state, and he again re- 
ceived every vote in the county but one, and that was his own. Be- 
fore his term expired he was elected to Congress over William Allen, 
of Clark county. He was re-elected in 1834, and again in 1836, 
1838 and 1840, but in 1842 John A. McClernand succeeded. 
Undaunted, Governor Casey immediately engaged in local domestic 
enterprises, but the people in 1847, together with Walter B. Scates, 
and F. S. Casey, elected him to the Constitutional Convention, and 
to him and Judge Scates, Mount Vernon is indebted for the location 
of the Supreme Court-house. He was elected to the Legislature 
again in 1852, and was a member of the State Senate at the time 
of his death, September 4, 1862. In politics Governor Casey was 
a stalwart Democrat of ye olden type — thoroughly patriotic and 
conscientious in all his public acts. He was a good financier, al- 
though beginning life penniless, he accumulated considerable 
wealth. His children were: Mahala, Mary Jane, Samuel K., 
Hiram R., Alice, Newton, Thomas S., and John R. These are 
all dead, unless John R., who was a physician at Joliet, still survives. 
Such was Governor Casey's success in public life, but he shone 
even more brilliantly in private life, among those who knew him 
best. Many did not ceem to realize the source of his strength, but 
had they witnessed him the first night of his residence in Jefferson 
county, when after building a fire beside the log for his wife to pre- 
pare their frugal meal, he stepped in to the forest close by and, 
leaning against a big tree with the silent stars looking down upon him 
as witnesses, he knelt in prayer to Almighty God, asking that his 
blessing might rest upon him in his new home and that health and 

58 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

happiness might dwell in his rude home, and above all, that he 
might be a Christian man and upright honorable citizen of this new 
county. That honest petition was granted all along the journey of 
the Governor's life, simply, no doubt, because it was oft repealed, 
—what a wonderful life! A grand old man, whose pure and ex- 
alted life is one of the most important in the history of Jefferson 
county, for the study and contemplation of the youths of the county. 
He was glorious in his death, or rather departure — for to such spirits 

"There is no death; these stars go down 
To rise upon some fairer shore. 
And bright in Heaven's jewelled crown. 
They'll shine forever more." 

His demise, coming in the meridian of manhood, was a national 
as well as a local calamity, for which a greatful posterity can only 
now have the consoling compensation that may come from the pen 
of the biographer, whom, we trust, may gather the hint and make a 
far better book than this, entitled "Life and Times of Governor 
Casey." For almost half a century he served his God and his fel- 
lowmen in Jefferson county, and at last laid down to sleep, with 
harness on — just as he desired — at post of duty. Calmly he sleeps 
where his active life was spent. He sleeps and the billows of rest- 
less humanity like a disturbed sea heave about his resting place; 
but they disturb not his calm repose, for his spirit — the real Zadok 
Casey — is not there, but is dwelling in "mansions not made with 
hands — eternal in the heavens." 

Let every reader of this sketch feel the importance of emulating 
the virtues of Jefferson county's truly great man — Governor Zadok 

StinSON H. Anderson, was another prominent citizen and 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 59 

statesman whom we desire to speak of in this chapter. The material 
and political history of Jefferson county and state of Illinois, are 
embellished with the finger-marks of these two statesmen — Gover- 
nors Casey and Anderson. 

Although of the same political faith, the only difference per- 
ceivable, being that Casey was more of a Jeffersonian Democrat, • 
while Anderson was more of the Jacksonian order, yet to say that 
at all times they were in perfect party harmony would be in con- 
flict with the political history of the county. Often it was found 
that there were two Richmonds in the field, and they almost always 
proved foemen worthy of each other's steel. For years it was 
another "war among the roses," but was without bloodshed and car- 
nage, and occasionally it cropped out among the descendants of 
these two great men, until the most of them have joined the ever- 
increasing majority on the other side. Sometimes the county seemed 
too small for these two master-spirits, and this led them to cross 
swords upon the points of political preferment. These local differ- 
ences, however, cut no difference upon national questions or in nat- 
ional contests. In these they stood shoulder to shoulder — always 
loyal to principle. Governor Anderson was born in Summer county, 
Tennessee, at the opening of the century — 1800, and while yet a 
young man, came to Jefferson county, a few years later than his peer. 
Governor Casey. He bought the farm east of town embracing all 
that portion of Mt. Vernon, east of Eighth street, which was after- 
ward Doctor Green's farm. He soon proved himself one of the 
most enterprising, successful farmers in the county. He devoted 
considerable attention to raising fine stock — especially fine horses. 
He loved a fleet-footed courser, and at one time he owned a little 
race mare which he called "Polly Ann." He believed that she 
could outrun the fleetest animal in all the realm. Doctor Logan, 
father of Gen. John A. Logan, had a fine racer called Walnut 

60 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO.. ILL. 

Cracker, and he challenged Anderson for a test of speed between 
his horse and "Polly Ann." Logan lived where Murphysboro now 
stands, and after considerable bantering between the owners of the 
rival nags, a race was agreed upon — a 1 ,000 yard dash. So con- 
fident was each of the speed of their pets, that they staked not only 
their ready cash, but almost their entire property upon the outcome. 
The race was run on Logan's own track at Murphysboro, and Gen. 
Bill Anderson, son of Governor, then but a lad, and Gen. 
John A. Logan, were the riders. When the horses came upon the 
track, the Logan horse came with his head up and nostrils dis- 
tended like a veritable war-horse, while little Polly Ann stood with 
her head down and ears drooped, seemmg almost lifeless. "General 
Bill" felt awed at the appearance of Walnut Cracker, and whim- 
peringly said to his father that he feared "Polly Ann" was beaten. 
"William," said the Governor, "she's got to beat, and you must 
see that she does beat, or I'll feel tempted to beat you!" 
The big race came off a few minutes later, and amidst a tremen- 
dous excitement Polly Ann passed under the wire several lengths 
ahead of the high-headed Logan horse, thus giving the Gover- 
nor possession of all the Logan stock, horses, cattle and 
hogs, except Walnut Cracker, and the Governor said he didn't want 
him. Governor Anderson came at a time most needed, to help 
build up the agricultural interests of the county and make the county 
seat a place of importance. He sold the Green farm to Ridgway a 
brother-in-law, and embarked in business up town, but farming 
suited him better, and in a few years, he became in possession of one 
of the best farms in Elk Prairie precinct, and moved there with his 

But the talents of Governor Anderson were not destmed to be 
hidden under a bushel, nor his abilities to rust unburnished, and, 
like Cincinnatus, he was called from the plow to take a place in the 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 61 

councils of the state. He was chosen to represent Jefferson county, 
in the Legislature in 1832, and again in 1834, where he showed his 
ability as a leader, convincing his fellow members that it was safe to 
trust him in that capacity. In 1838 he was elected Lieutenant 
Governor on the ticket with Governor Carlin, and for four years 
was the presiding officer of the State Senate. Hon. Noah Johnston 
who was a member of that body describes him as an able, courteous, 
dignified presiding officer, whose knowledge of parliamentary law 
enabled him to avoid mistakes. His rulings always withstood the 
severest tests. After his term of Lieutenant Governor, he was ap- 
pointed Captain of the United States Dragoons, and served in the 
Florida or Seminole war. Afterwards he was warden of the state 
penitentiary, at Alton, for four years. During President Polk's term 
as President, he served as United States Marshal for the state of 
Illinois, and performed well his duties. 

The Governor was a man of most exalted integrity — the very 
soul of honor, scorning everything that even had the appearance of a 
mean act. Although unlike Governor Casey, he did not affiliate with 
any church, still he gave freely of his means to all churches and to 
the spread of the Gospel. He took his final departure in September, 
1857, deeply mourned alike by the state and county, which he had 
so faithfully served — and by all the people who knew him. Happy 
is the county which can boast of the lives and services of two pio- 
neers such as were Governor Zadok Casey and Governor Stinson 
H. Anderson. 



The Permanent Seat of Justice — Some of Its Settlers — Noah 
Johnston, a Land Mark. 

Courage — nothing e'er withstood 
Freemen fightmg for their good; 
Armed with all their father's fame. 
They will win and wear a name, 
That shall go to endless glory. 
Like the gods of old Greek story. 
Raised to Heaven and heavenly worth. 
For the good they gave to earth. 

Brevity is a necessity at this point, but it seems proper that we 
allude to these very first settlers and some of their doings in this 
chapter. Later on, of course, our reference to individuals must 
cease and our remarks be merged into a more general write-up of 
what has taken place during the passing years. But these first set- 
tlers well deserve our attention and praise. William L. Howell, the 
man who succeeded Lewis Watkins as Sheriff, was a nice man, but 
a poor manager, and he had to give up the office on that account. 
He moved up to Jordan's Prairie, where his little boy was lost in 
trying to follow his mother to the branch. There were only two 
paths, one to the branch and the other to the neighbor's. On her 
return to the house, the mother missed the boy and gave the alarm. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 63 

but it was nearly night, and the boy could not be found. For two 
nights and a day search was kept up. Green Casey lived at the 
Frank Casey place; he went out to attend to his stock after dusk, 
and heard a child crying, as he thought, but fearing it might be a 
panther, went back to the house. Early next morning he took his 
gun and went out to the point whence came the noise, and there sat 
the child, quite exhausted. He was soon restored to his almost dis- 
tracted parents, and joy reigned in that household. A burying 
ground was laid off at Old Union, and Aunt Milly Tyler was the 
first woman to be buried there, and then McBride's wife, and Roar- 
ing Billy Woods. Thomas Tunstall bought the Kirby Tavern, and 
kept it and sold groceries. He bought and sent South a great deal 
of stock; he gave a set of plates or a set of knives and forks, for a 
yearling. He gave Nolin forty coWs and calves for a race horse. 
He erected the tread-mill that stood near the Asa B. Watson place, 
and brought John Summers, from Shawneetown, to run it. Sum- 
mers afterwards married and the long line of Summerses followed. 
Elisha Plummer took the William Casey house, and started a 
blacksmith shop and two cabins on what is now South Eleventh 
street. He was a cabinet maker, his wife a sister to Jarvis Fierce; 
Colonel Reardon, the preacher, was his son. Joel Pace built his 
first cabin about a hundred yards east of where Governor Pavey 
lives. Doctors Adams and Glover came, boarded at the H. T. 
Pace corner, but soon Glover went to McLeansboro, and Adams 
married Jane Tunstall; some years afterward moved to Moore's 
Prairie, and died. Downing Baugh came, married Milly Pace, 
went to Vandalia, to Collinsville, finally located in Mount Vernon, 
where he sold goods and was Justice of the Peace. He built a two- 
story house on the north side of the square, and put up another 
grocery store. McClenden built a small house west of the court- 
house. Joseph Wilbanks came in and took charge of the tavern. 

64 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

and bought the McClenden house for a store room, soon after went » 
South and died, and Governor Anderson married his widow. Bur- 
chett Maxey built the H. T. Pace corner. Among those who did 
business on the square in those days, and who bought in and sold out, 
were William Hamblin, James Black, E. H. Ridgway, W. W. 
Pace, James Bowman, John Johnson, Harvey Pace, Stinson An- 
derson and scores of others whose names we have not been able to 
secure, but business went on and the town grew as the new settlers 
came in, mostly from where the original settlers came from. 

In 1822 a new court-house was decided upon, the wall to be 
brick, thirty-two by twenty-four feet, two stories high, etc. Mc- 
Bride took the job, worked on it, handed it over to Thomas Jordan. 
It cost three hundred and twelve dollars, but stood unfinished until 
1829, when it was ordered repaired, furnished and painted with 
three coats of Spanish brown. The work was done by Cannon 
Maxey and Stephen G. Hicks, the painting being done by Jarvis 
Pierce ; a few feet east of this new court-house were the logs of the 
old court-house, bought by H. B. Newby, and he put up a house 
with them at his old place (now known as the Gibson Place) ; the 
old Clerks's office disappeared and provision was made for the 
Clerk's office in the new court-house, so we see the seat of justice 
moving up to a higher plane, but we find it important to leave the 
other improvements in the hands of the proprietors and builders, 
while we gather up more valuable facts. 

In 1824, William Casey sold ninety rods off the west side of 
the southwest quarter section 29, to James Gray, and the conveyance 
totally ignored the fact that Mount Vernon is in the heart of the 
tract. This land was laid off and added to the town and called 
"Storm's Survey, of Gray"s addition to Mount Vernon." After 
this Mount Vernon began to "spread" herself, and a new and 
larger court-house was in demand, and the Commissioners appointed 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 65 

Noah Johnston, J. W. Greetham, Downing Baugh and A. M. 
Grant to advertise and plan for the building of a new court-house. 
Still other commissioners. Barton Atchison, James Sursa and Wil- 
liam Bullock, mounted their horses and went to Carmi, to examine 
the White county court-house, and when they returned they ordered 
that the Clerk shall advertise for the building of a new court-house 
after the plan and size of the court-house at Carmi. William Ed- 
wards (known as Uncle Billy) got the contract. He was induced 
by Governor Casey to come to Jefferson county and buy lands, and 
got here just in time to get the contract for five thousand five hundred 
dollars. He was a Methodist preacher. His eldest son, Francis, 
became a physician, married Colonel Hick's daughter, located at 
Sandoval, and recently died there. His youngest son, Joseph, also 
a doctor, has long been a resident of Mendota, and paid Mount 
Vernon a visit last summer. The court-house was finished in 1 840, 
but the county had to borrow money to pay for it. This court-house 
was forty feet square, square roof, court room below, four offices 
above with stairs at the southern corners, with doors on the south, 
east, and west, altogether making quite a formidable appearance. 
And in this building many of the political giants of the state were 
at one time and another, listened to by Jefferson county's hardy 
yeomen. In this court room took place the noted altercation be- 
tween our former fellow citizen. Doctor Green and Gen. John A. 
Logan, during the war for the Union. 

Up to the building of this court-house, the town had not begun 
to "put on airs," so to speak, but now the Mount Vernon Academy 
was being built, the old church was finished, the town was incor- 
porated and prosperity seemed headed this way, when men like 
Eddy, Castles, Baltzels, Phillips, Doctor Short, Schank, Hinman, 
Thomas, Wingate, Nelson, Haynes, Scates, Roe, Gray, Rahm, 
Stephenson, Palmer, Barrett, Tromly and others were locating and 

66 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

building in the "old town." During this swell of prosperity. Dr. W. 
S. Van Cleve was instrumental in having the public square enclosed, 
and the weeds cut, which gave the new court-house quite a "said 
and aforesaid" appearance, the only eye-sore being the old log jail, 
which graced, or disgraced the eastern side of the new building. 
Thus during the first twenty years of Mount Vernon's existence, it 
had three so-called court-houses, but they were not "permanent," 
like the seat of justice. 

Thus far there had been but little incentive to grow crops, for 
there was no market. Each settler raised his own corn, potatoes and 
"garden sass," but no more than enough for home consumption. 
Hard times were the rule especially by the time spring put in its ap- 
pearance. About all the settler had to trade with were hen's eggs, 
pelts, hides, etc., except occasionally the men and children would 
go into the woods and dig "ginseng," which would bring about three 
dollars per pound, and that would make the whole family feel 
aristocratic. The cattle and hogs wintered themselves — as to fresh 
meat, there was no trouble ; the head of the family would take down 
his gun and go a little way into the woods, bring in game of dif- 
ferent kinds, for breakfast, dinner or supper, whenever needed, and 
everybody had a little corn patch for bread, but there were no means 
to reduce the corn to meal except with those who were lucky enough 
to have mortars and pestles, or those who would hollow out the top 
surface of a big stump and beat the essence out of it with a hammer 
or stone. There were no mills for a long while, until this prosperous 
period just recorded. 

Perhaps there could be no more appropriate closing of this 
chapter than to give the life-sketch of the next character to the two 
prominent citizens given in the preceding chapter, in no less a per- 
sonage than 

Noah Johnston. He was a land-mark, and favorably 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 67 

known to all in his day and generation. He has passed away, but 
still liveth. He liveth today in history, and in the memory of the 
people where he had his earthly existence. His life stands out as it 
were a friendly guide board, ready to point out to the traveler the 
rocks and snares on the road of life. He was a gentleman of the old 
school — a gentleman by nature. His life and labors were long and 
eventful and along the line of march he spent few idle moments. 
With active thought and mind he suffered but few events to pass 
unheeded. He was a grand man, and worthy of being a citizen of the 
best county in the best state of the Union. As a boy we almost idol- 
ized him ; as a man, we remember him as the ideal of what an Amer- 
ican citizen should be. He lives in the hearts of his countrymen. He 
was born in Virginia, 1 799, came to Jefferson county, via Kentucky 
and Indiana. He married Mary Bullock in Indiana, and they 
came to Jefferson county and raised their family. Here, in storm 
and sunshine they trod the road of life together, doing what they 
could to better the world and now their bodies lie together in the 
cemetery, while their spirits are basking together in that bliss un- 
known to earth. 

At first the major was engaged in farming and merchandising, 
but was not very successful. In 1 838 he was elected to the State 
Senate, to represent this and Hamilton counties, and during his term 
of four years much important legislation was passed upon. During 
the term the state capital was removed from Vandalia to Springfield, 
where for some years the Legislature was held in a church. Abra- 
ham Lincoln was a member of the same session and led the removal 
project, together with other prominent men from the central part of 
the state. In 1 852, Major Johnston, Abraham Lincoln and Judge 
Dickey were appointed a commission to take and report the evidence 
on claims filed against the state on account of the construction of the 
Illinois Canal. In 1845 he was enrolling and engrossing clerk of 

68 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

the Senate, and under his inspection passed the entire revision of 
1845, which is said to be the best the state ever had. In 1846, he 
was elected as a "floater" to the General Assembly, from the coun- 
ties of Jefferson, Hamilton and Franklin. After his return home, 
he was appointed army paymaster, and ordered to St. Louis for 
duty. The bond was two hundred thousand dollars, and he did not 
feel like asking anybody to go on it, but his friends rallied around 
him and made his bond good. He reported for duty and opened 
and took charge of the office. At one time he went to Leaven- 
worth with two hundred thousand dollars, and in the spring of 1 848, 
crossed the plains with one hundred thousand dollars. He traveled 
twenty-five thousand miles, received and paid out two million dol- 
lars and never lost a cent. While in this position the major, by 
economy, saved enough from his salary to relieve him of his financial 

In November, 1 854, Finney D. Preston resigned the office of 
Clerk of the Supreme Court, and Major Johnson was appointed in 
his stead; elected to same in 1855 and 1861 . In 1866 he was again 
elected to Legislature, from Jefferson and Franklin counties. Be- 
sides these places of honor and trust, he served on a board to super- 
intend the construction of the Supreme court-house, as Justice of the 
Peace, as postmaster (although he permitted Daniel Kenney to 
draw the pay) and was deputy United States Marshal under 
Stinson H. Anderson and president of the First National Bank. 

He was a man of good, hard sense, no surplus words, a wise 
and honest counsel, and enjoyed the confidence of all with whom he 
had dealings. He witnessed every material improvement and advance- 
ment made by our county and state, and has contributed largely to 
the same. As a partisan he was a Democrat of the old school, al- 
ways ready to give a reason for the faith that was in him — a friend 
to the churches and the schools, and every improvement that was 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 69 

worthy of support. In no position, public or private, was ever 
lodged the least stain on his character, straightforward, plain, frank, 
honest, the noblest American of them all. Born in 1800, he de- 
parted this life just before his eighty-eighth birthday, lamented by 
the people of the entire county. He was buried beside his wife in 

Edward N. Johnston, youngest son, is the sole survivior of 
the family, and resides at the old homestead, which he has improved 
and modernized. He has many characteristics of his revered father, 
and is a staid and substantial citizen, engaged somewhat in farming, 
and a stockholder in the bank of which his father was at one time 


Still More about Mount Vernon and Better — It's Growth and 
Development as it Grows Older— Its Business Men — Its Prosperity 
— Its Present and Future. 

Haste not! Rest not! Calmly wait; 
Meekly bear the storms of fate! 
Duty be thy polar guide — 
Do the right, whate'er betide! 
Haste not! Rest not! Conflicts past, 
God shall crown the work at last. 

Aside from the old Goshen road, there were no roads except 
bridle paths. No road touched Mount Vernon for a couple of 
year after it was laid off. The new road from Crenshaw's went to 
Isaac Casey's on Beal's Hill, but roads soon came and have con- 
stantly increased since. Doctor Johnson says the first religious or- 
ganization in Mount Vernon was at the log court-house, in 1 820, by 
Jacob Norton, Joseph Jordan, Oliver Morris, and Overton Har- 
low, and they were Baptists. And not long after a log church was 
raised near the creek, but it was not much used and the meetings 
were moved to William Hicks, two miles west of town. But the 
church at the creek was still used occasionally until Newby bought 
and converted it into a blacksmith shop, and there George Starner 
and Jefferson Stephenson, afterwards County Judge of Washington 
county, hammered iron for many years. The Baptist church was 
built north of the Fairfield road, where the trail used to run north 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 71 

of the Franklin school. It, too, was near the creek, supposedly be- 
cause there was much need of water there. Afterwards another 
house was built which would now be inside the old fair grounds, 
if standing. Mount Vernon continued to build up. George Pace 
sold the lot where Strattan's hardware store stands, to John Van 
Cleve, and moved to Salem in 1836; W. W. Pace built a cabin 
where the Ham bank stands ; Ed Ridgway built a high-roofed house 
where Wise is, and S. G. Hicks sold goods in it for a while and then 
built where Buckham is. Later Hicks built near where the Metho- 
dist church stands. Ben Miller bought it and moved it to his lot, 
where the Summers house stands. S. H. Anderson used to live in 
a cabin about where Doctor Green's office is, until he traded what 
was the Green farm to Ed Ridgway for a farm in Elk Prairie, and 
moved to it. John Bostwick kept a rough house — a doggery, so- 
called, on the Fergeron lot until one night it fell down and scattered 
itself all over the street, and then John went to the new town of 
Rome, and started a grocery there, after he had hired Asa Watson 
to build the first house in Rome. 

In 1 830, Doctor Adams built a house where Grant's store now 
is. He sold it to H. T. Pace, for twenty dollars, he to Burchett 
Maxey for twenty-five dollars; he to Oliver Morris for thirty-five 
dollars. Baugh built a store on the north side, and a two-story 
frame a little east of it, but sold them and rented Van Cleve's 
house. Doctor Allen came and bought the Baugh place, and put 
a glass front in it — known as the old glass house. Noah Johnston and 
Bullock merchandised on where the Mammoth now stands. Green 
Daniels built on the corner of Ninth and Jordan streets, and lived 
there; Samuel Goodrich afterwards lived there. Green Daniels 
built a cabin northeast of the court-house. Bowman got it and built 
a house in front of it, and let Rhoelam Allen sell it to Rev. John 
Johnson, and that was his home until he died — where the Wise 



Clothing Store now stands; James Ross, a hatter, came and buiU a 
shop where the Economy store stands. A. D. Estes built a grocery 
store on the Mammoth corner. Absalom Estes built just west 
of the grocery store, remained on the corner until Castles came and 
bought it and built on a residence ; there it stood until Crews bought 
it. W. B. Thorn bought the lot south of Hobbs Mill, Ninth street. 
He started a blacksmith shop and lived in the rear. In 1837, John 
Johnson built a log house where the City hotel stands, the Doctors 
Greetham and T. B. Johnson used it as an office. Thorn sold his 
blacksmith shop and moved to the red house about where Hawkins 
bakery stands. Alfred Potee built where E. M. Walker lives. 
The Lamar boys built a house on what is now the east end of the 
Mrs. Joel Watson property, and Mrs. Foley Blackhawk, Williams 
and Decovey lived there. Doctor Greetham built where Hitch- 
cocks' gallery is. Reverend Phelps built on south Casey and 
Ridgway put up a row of houses on what is now Broadway from 
Eleventh to the middle of the block, west. Jarvis Pierce built the 
Mount Vernon Inn, opposite the Methodist church, and sold it to 
Eli Anderson, and when Grant came in, he bought the school-house 
that stood near Noah Johnston's, and added to it the east end of the 
hotel. The Joel Watson house was built, and the Baltzell house, 
just west of Watson and the Melcher house which stood near the 
Mount Vernon Inn. D. Baugh built the house which stood on 
Herrins corner. Thomas Cunningham built the house where 
Charles Pool now lives. M. Tromley built the house where the 
mattress factory now stands, and John Livingston the one where 
Ward's house now stands. The Caesar and Guyler cabins went 
up where the Carter property now is, and all the travelers stopped 
and bought ginger cakes and cider, from Aunt Mariah, as she al- 
ways kept out the sign for the benefit of travelers. W. Prigmore 
built where Mrs. Klinker lives, Johnny Smith where the Mahaffy 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 73 

house stands. Tom Pace built west of the old Odd Fellows' hall ; 
McAtee got it and it formed a part of the Johnny Bogan place. 
Hiram McLaughlin built on Casey street. Doctor Gray got it, then 
Nelson owned it. So it will be seen that considerable prosperity 
struck Mount Vernon during the forties. Dealers had to obtain the 
license in those days, and Joel Pace, Handle and Grant. E. H. 
Ridgway, W. W. Pace, Harvey T. Pace, Eli Anderson, H. B. 
Newby, D. Baugh, Noah Johnston, Dr. Adam Sanderson and 
Eastes, Thompson and Johnson, B. Wells, A. D. Estes, Hick- 
man and Witherspoon, L. C. Moss. A. B. Watson, James Kirby, 
James Bowman, S. G. Hicks, Van Cleve, and others took out li- 
cese and it seemed that business was certainly on the boom. Peltry 
was the chief money of the county, and the road to St. Louis was 
kept hot sending in the skins which were swapped for goods or 

The second court-house was built and prosperity spread her- 
self. The academy was also built about this time, and new citizens 
came along in a hurry. During this business period Mount Vernon's 
population was increased by such good citizens as Jonas Eddy, 
Castles, Baltzel, Doctor Short, Schank, Phelps, Hinman, Thomas, 
Clement, Nelson, Doctor Caldwell, Doctor Roe, Doctor Gray, 
Kahn, Stephenson, Palmer, Barrett, Tromly, Barnes, Seimer, and 
soon after came Green, Mills, Preston, McAtee, Bogan, Condit. 
A few years later, Stratton, Pavey and Fergerson came to town, 
and then business commenced in earnest. Stratton bought the 
Jacky Johnson farm, swapped it for a big stock of goods, took in 
James Fergerson as a partner, took under their wings J. D. John- 
son, Westbrook and others, and got down to trading, milling, and 
almost anything that would bring the people and their money to 
town. Varnell came and added largely to the business hubbub, and 
Mount Vernon was the center of all creation so far as we knew. 

74 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

for we had no telegraphy, telephones, railroads or daily papers to 
tell us what other folks were doing. And it was "get there," and 
don't forget it. Varnell built the Continental Hotel, the New York 
store, and many other buildings. The Methodist church, the John- 
son House were built, the Supreme court-house, the Presbyterian 
church and many other houses were going up like rockets and there 
were good times galore. But along came the war and stopped 
everything, and not until the coming of the first railroad, in 1869. 
did the prosperity resume operations. Then the coming of the road 
and the spreading of the town gave an impetus to the work that has 
almost constantly gone on since. But our remarks as to the town 
must be general, for it has become too large for little fellows like us 
to handle in detail. The railroad built shops here, and people came 
flocking in from everywhere to help boom the town, and like Mr. 
Finney's turnip behind the barn, it grew and it grew and it still 
keeps growing. After the coming of the roads, three trunk lines, and 
one cut-off. Mount Vernon has never seriously suffered for trade, be- 
cause she has had first class dealers, always ready to serve all 
comers. With such business men as we have had during the past 
fifty years — the Varnells, the Stratton-Fergerson's, the Ham-Tay- 
lor's, the Nugents (for be it remembered that the great Nugent firm 
of St. Louis, got their start in Mount Vernon) , the Johnsons, the 
Wards, the CuUis, McAttees, the Hobbs and Paveys, and many 
others that have held forth along the years. Mount Vernon could 
not fail to please and succeed. All this refers to the general trade, 
to say nothing of the special lines represented by hundreds of equally 
as good men as those named above. We allude to this now, so that 
special lines may fall into their proper places, and that we may show 
that Mount Vernon is up-to-date in all departments. The lawyers, 
doctors and others will have the benefit of another chapter. It is 
now two miles across Mount Vernon's corporate limits in either di- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 75 

rection, whereas, it first only embraced twenty acres. It has a pop- 
ulation of ten thousand people, and still growing to "beat the band. 
It has four railroads, telegraphs and telephones galore, electric 
lights, inexhaustible water works, gas plant, heating plant, many 
miles of improved streets, perhaps ten miles of good sidewalks, and 
all the modern improvements, and a city council that is wide-awake 
for the city's best interests. It contains the Mount Vernon car and 
manufacturing shops, employing about seven hundred men, due 
notice of which plant will be given elsewhere, a preserving factory, 
a knitting factory, and many smaller factories — all up to date. 
Brick streets and granitoid pavements were inaugurated under May- 
or S. H. Watson in 1892, and are still going on with vigor. There 
is hardly a block that cannot be reached dry shod, and the end is 
not in sight. As soon as township organization was adopted, the 
county ordered a new court-house, with G. W. Evans, W. A. Wil- 
bank, Samuel Johnson, D. H. Warren and John McConnell, as 
building committee. It was built, but blown down by the cyclone 
in 1888, and was rebuilt larger and better. It shows for itself in 
the public square. It is too late now to particularize about these 
things. Suffice it to say that the public spirited citizens have de- 
manded these improvements, and their many fine homes in the city 
show that while they demand public improvements, they begin at 
home in the matter of showing what ought to be done. So with 
these broad and truthful statements, we will give Mount Vernon a 
rest, at least for a season, while we turn our attention to other de- 
partments of Jefferson county history. Mount Vernon now has free 
mail delivery, requiring six carriers to cover the territory which is a 
great convenience, especially for the people in the outlying sections 
of the city. The system was inaugurated when Captain S. H. Wat- 
son was postmaster and the writer was his assistant. Many other 
improvements are in contemplation. One which strikes all the 

76 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

people favorably is the erection of a union depot, which will be an 
honor to the city and a great convenience to the traveling public, ob- 
viating the neccesity of having to walk or be carted from one part of 
the city to another, in order to make the transfer from one road to 
the other, and also hire the baggage transferred. This is one of 
the pressing needs of the city, and it is to be hoped that the roads 
will see the importance of getting together and building this union 
depot, as no improvement is more sorely needed. Other important 
improvements are coming, but we leave them to be recorded by the 
next historian. 



The Caseys, the Maxeys, the Johnsons, the Watsons, the 
Paces, Baughs and Others. 

"Life's more than breath. 

And the quick round of blood; 

'Tis a great spirit and a busy heart. 

We hve in deeds, not years. 

In thoughts, not breaths. 

In feeHngs, not in figures on the dial. 

We should count time by heart-throbs. 

He most lives who thinks most. 

Feels the noblest, acts the best; 

It matters not how long we live, but how. 

In speaking of the first citizens of Jefferson county as being 
men and women of stalwart character for honesty and integrity, we 
do not mean to convey the idea that they were without their faults, 
for by tracing their history we find that they had "weak spots," 
like the rest of mankind. Neither would we lionize them because 
they lived to a "ripe old age," but because they had for their 
motto: "What's brave, what's noble, let's do it." And because, as 
one of them expresses it: 

"It's nothing against you to fall down flat. 
But to lie there, that's disgrace." 

78 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

And this is the class of people we are writing about in this 
chapter — such as the Caseys, the Maxeys, the Johnsons, the Wat- 
sons, the Paces, the Baughs, etc. Mr. Johnson alludes to a general 
fight that took place in New Mount Vernon in 1820, in which 
nearly everybody took part. It seemed that somebody said that the 
Caseys and Maxeys were going to rule the county. John Abbott 
wanted to refute that idea and threatened to thrash the first Casey 
or Maxey he met — which happened to be Elihu Maxey. At it they 
went and soon the entire population was interested, excited, and 
even "Uncle" Jimmy Johnson threw his straw hat high in the air and 
invited any other man who wanted to fight to come forward. Jim 
Abbott said, "Anyone that whips John Abbott will have to thrash 
me." The whole outfit had their coats off, ready for the fray; but 
in a few minutes the storm blew over and "peace reigned in War- 
saw" — or rather, where they "war saw" a short time before. It 
was no unusual thing for part of the population to settle their dif- 
ferences by fist-i-cuffs, but this was the first outbreak among the 
better citizens. 

Aunt Suky Johnson in her memoirs fifteen years later, also gives 
Mount Vernon a black eye, when in her account of her new home 
she says: "We found Mount Vernon a 'hard place.' There were 
only five professors of religion in town — two Baptists and three 
Methodists, and the same number of groceries — five. There was 
no church; two blacksmith shops, three stores and a half a dozen 
log houses; not a fence in town except crooked rail fences, and 
these were buried under a luxurious growth of elder, polk and jim- 
son weeds. Saturday was always a lively day. The Moores, Jor- 
dans, the Long Prairie and Horse Creek gangs, came to town, and 
from two to six fights took place, and that A had his nose bitten off, 
or B had his jaw-bone broken, or C had his eyes blackened> etc., 
etc., were the items that went to make up the gossip of the day. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 79 

Races and shooting matches, open grogeries on Sunday and the 
fence corners full of drunken men, were part of the exercises." 

But all this was the "other side" of the story of our first set- 
tlers. The Christianity of the Caseys, Maxeys and Johnsons and 
others soon began to tell on the town and county, and has pro- 
gressed through the succeeding generations until now we find the en- 
tire county equal in civilization and refinement to any part of the 
country, and as to Mount Vernon, it may very appropriately be 
termed the Athens of Southern Illinois. 


The Casey family was the most numerous at the start, both in 
the south, and in the first settlement of Jefferson county. We have 
already given the life and services of Zadok Casey. His father was 
Randolph, a warrior under Gen. Francis Marion. Of his chil- 
dren — Zadok, Samuel, Levi, Isaac, all came to Jefferson county, 
and have been noticed. We are just in receipt of a letter from 
Oakland, California, from Mrs. Mellie Casey Rockwell, in which 
she says: "My father, William B. (Buck) Casey, was born in Jef- 
ferson county, Illinois, in June, 1821, the second male child born in 
the county — son of William and Amy (Barker) Casey. Uncle 
Blackford Casey, my father's oldest brother, was born in June, 
1815, and was the very first male child born in what is now Jefferson 
county. My mother is still living at the age of eighty-three ; my 
father died in 1884. Uncle Blackford Casey passed away in De- 
cember, 1892. His oldest son, Greetham Casey, who was born in 
Jefferson county, seventy years ago, now lives in Covine, Los An- 
geles county, California. My mother taught school in Mount Ver- 
non in 1850." This reminds us that there are fewer Caseys in old 
Jefferson today than there were in those early days. They have 

80 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

moved on with civilization and become less prolific, perhaps. The 
same may be said of the Maxeys, and Johnsons, also, for they are 
fewer now than then. William Casey, Jr., came here in 1836; 
he was the father of Blackford, Maletna, Buck, Abraham, Drury 
B., Thomas, Melissa and Zadok, Jr. He used to live northwest 
two miles on what is now the Centralia road. Abraham T., Wil- 
liam's brother, married Valinda Maxey, located on Salem road and 
preached "around." His children were Harriet, who married Dr. 
W. S. Van Cleve; Catherine, who married Mont Morrow; Bel- 
veretta, who married J. R. Walker; Elizabeth, who married John 
Sproul; Martha, who married Dr. Shirley, and Lafayette, an itin- 
erant preacher. Thomas M. Casey, afterwards known as "Uncle 
Tommy," married Harriet Maxey. They had eleven children and 
we remember: Clinton M., Jane, WiUiam, Cynthia, Mary, Barger, 
Rebecca, Nanny, Abraham and Rhoda. Abraham P. died in 
Missouri, leaving his children; John C, Green P., Franklin S., 
Martin S., Isaac, Clarissa and Elizabeth, in this county. John C. 
married Polly Casey, Green P. married Margaret Watkins, Frank- 
lin S. married Rhoda Taylor. He lived on the Richview road, near 
Grand Prairie, and died there. Thomas J. and Robert were his 
sons. Mrs. Lew Beale was his daughter. Lewis F. Casey, in 
giving an account of his father's family. Green P. Casey, says: "My 
grandfather was Abraham P. My grandfather on my mother's 
side was Lewis Watkins. My parents were married in Mount Ver- 
non in 1820, went to farming out in the woods, with nothing but 
bears, deer and coons to molest them. My brothers, Abraham and 
Hiram, died in childhood; my sisters married as follows: Harriet 
married George Seward ; May A. married John T. Smith ; Nancy 
A. married Henry Phillips; Sarah A. married John WiUis; Mahala 
P. married Dr. John Murphy; Margaret married Capt. D. M. 
Short, of Texas, and Rhoda Ellen married Alfred Galbreath. Also 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 81 

two sisters, Arabella and Isabella, both of whom died young. 
Green P. died in 1857, and his wife in 1866, mourned by all who 
knew them." Lewis F., the surviving son of this family, was made 
surveyor of Jefferson county at the age of twenty; was Commis- 
sioner to take the census of the county m 1 845 ; was lieutenant of 
Company H, Second Regiment, in Mexico; represented his native 
county (Jefferson) in the Legislature in 1847. He moved to Texas 
in 1852, was chosen Prosecuting Attorney; elected to the State Sen- 
ate in 1861 ; was surrounded by secession sentiment and served the 
cause until it railed; then returned to Illinois; began to practice law 
at Centralia, and died there a few years ago. His wife was Mary 
J., daughter of Governor Z. Casey. Samuel K. Casey, eldest son 
of Governor Casey, bought the old homestead (now the Chance 
place) and lived and died there after serving in both houses of the 
Legislature, serving as warden of the penitentiary, and being large- 
ly instrumental in securing Mount Vernon her first railroad. He 
is survived by Samuel Casey, a prominent real estate dealer of 
Mount Vernon. Thomas S. Casey, son of Zadok, also served in 
both houses of the Legislature, as Circuit Judge, and for a while 
as colonel in the war, and for many years he was prominent in the 
law and at one time was on the Appellate Court bench. Newton 
Casey, another son of Zadok, also served in the Legislature, and 
other public positions. Mahala, his daughter, married a Mr. 
Dwight and Judge Samuel L. Dwight, of Centralia, is their sur- 
viving child. He married Capt. R. D. Noleman's daughter. The 
other Casey descendants in Jefferson county have proven themselves 
good useful citizens in the private walks of life, and none of them 
have ever wrought disgrace on the Casey name, and Jefferson county 
may consider herself fortunate in having the Caseys for her first in- 
habitants. Suffice it to say that the Casey family have left their 
impress on Jefferson county, although the greater number of them 

82 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

have passed over the divide, where they await the grand Casey 
reunion on the other side. 


In the early settlement of the county, the Maxey family comes 
next. Jesse Maxey, of Tennessee, had several children: William, 
Edward, Walter, John and Elizabeth. William, who was mar- 
ried, came to Illinois in 1818, and was appointed Justice of the 
Peace. He tried to marry Ransom Moss and Anna Johnson, and 
"broke down" completely. Some say he commenced on the Dec- 
laration of Independence; backed off and tackled the Constitution 
of the United States, and finally got through, but Governor Casey 
twitted him with saying that the Lord instituted matrimony in the 
days of men's "ignorance" instead of "innocence." He finally 
concluded with the invocation: "And may the Lord have mercy 
on your souls." And thus ended the first marriage ceremony ever 
"pulled off" in Jefferson county. Mr. Maxey was a good man, if 
not very learned. His children were: Clarissa, Henry B., Bennett 
N., Elihu, Harriet, Vylinda, Charles H., JoshuaC, William M. A. 
and Jehu. Burchett Maxey came in time to buy a lot and build the 
first house ever built in Mount Vernon. He married Peggy Taylor 
and their children were: Eliza, who married Col. S. G. Hicks; 
W. P., Thomas B., Elizabeth (married Breeze) ; Elihu K., John 
H., James C, who married Nancy Moss, and still lives in Mount 
Vernon; Edward K., Jehu J., Henry B., Franklin C. and Harvey 
M. Walter S., Henry, Oscar and Frank, are sons of James C. 
and Nancy (Moss) Maxey; Mrs. Sugg, her daughter. 

Henry N. Maxey was in the War of 1812, and with General 
Jackson at New Orleans. His children were: Emily, William H., 
James J., Charles H., Joshua C, Eliza and Thomas J. William 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 83 

and James were preachers. Elihu, the one who whipped Abbott, 
married EveHne Taylor, then Sarah Guthrie, built a horse mill, was 
a benefactor and met accidental death. He had ten children — 
Talina, married Mervel Smith; Perrigan T., Henry, William C, 
Thomas, Elizabeth, Margaret and Eliza. 

Charles H. was the son of William and married Sally Bruce. 
His children were: Caroline, Mary, Martha, Drucilla. F. S. 
Parker married Caroline, Joseph Burke married Mary, C. D. Frost 
married Martha, G. A. Collins married Susan, and James M. Swift 
married Drucilla. Joshua Cannon, son of William, married Susan 
Criswell, and their daughters were Mrs. M. A. Cummins and Mrs. 
John C. Tyler and son. Thomas, who died recently. 

Dr. William A. Maxey, youngest son of William, married 
Edna Owens. He was both physician and preacher. His children 
were: Simeon W., Samuel T. (spoken of elsewhere), William C, 
Harriet J. (Mrs. Satterfield), Sarah C. (Mrs. S. Hill), J. Van, 
and Nelson, who married Miss Burgen and lives in Iowa. 

John Maxey, son of Jesse, came in 1823 with William and 
Jonathan Wells, removed to Wayne county and died. Such, in 
brief, was the Maxey families, who first came in to help make the 
county and mould sentiments of good citizenship, and along both 
lines they have been eminently successful. 


Like the Caseys and Maxeys, the Johnsons one and all have 
been prominent from the earliest settlement of the county. Benjamin 
Johnson, the ancestor of our Jefferson county Johnsons, was a 
Marylander. John, a son of his, was the father of our pioneers. 
Lewis, the son of this John Johnson, was among our very first 
settlers. He had nine children — Milly, Anna, Lucy, married L. 

84 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

Foster and they lost their house by fire and their infant son was 
cremated; James E. Johnson was the eldest son of Lewis. He was 
quite a preacher and improved the farm where John T. Johnson 
raised his family. John T., the next oldest brother of James, was 
licensed to preach when but twenty years old. He joined the con- 
ference and took regular work. Nicholas lived in Grand Prairie 
and died there. Elizabeth married G. B. AfP.ack, of Richview. 
Nancy married James Barnes, of Richview. Susan married A. 
Witherspoon, and went to Kentucky. James Johnson second 
son of John, married Clarissa Maxey in Tennessee, and came 
here in 1818. His eldest son, John, married Sarah Hobbs 
and they were the parents of our present Dr. A. Curt, James D. 
and John N. Johnson, Mrs. Henry T. Waters and Mrs. David H. 
Summers. He was an enterprising man, a physician, but chose 
rather to do other business. He merchandised and built several 
houses in Mount Vernon, among them the Johnson House, the big 
brick near the Methodist Episcopal church, in 1854. He died, 
much missed and lamented, in 1 858. 

John, the youngest brother of Lewis and James, came later, in 
1 834, and located in Mount Vernon. He died here in 1 858. His 
children were Doctor T. B., who died in Kentucky in 1870; the 
wife of Blackford Casey; J. Fletcher; Washington; G. Wesley, J. 
Benson, a girl and boy who died in childhood, and Adam Clark, 
the faithful historian of the pioneers of Jefferson county. John 
Johnson, "Uncle Jacky," as we knew him in our boyhood days, 
was born in Virginia, in 1 783 — born in poverty and left an orphan. 
By the help of a slave he learned the alphabet, and after he was 
converted in his teens, he could not read intelligently. But by the 
light of pine knots he studied the Bible at night, after hard days' 
work, and on Sunday, at some cabin on the hillside he would pro- 
claim the Gospel with a pathos and power that always carried the 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 85 

hearts of his rustic hearers by storm. He had a voice of unusual 
power and could be heard two miles away. His discourses were 
brief, but always plain, practical and convincing. Yet with all his 
rugged vigor his heart was as tender as a woman's, with a sympathy 
that extended even to the insect at his feet. He was to all intents 
and purposes, a pioneer preacher of the Cartwright order, except 
that he had none of the great preacher's belligerency. He traveled 
the country from Ohio to Natchez, in Mississippi, and preached at 
every opportunity. His allotted work led him through much unin- 
habited country, among Indians, wild animals and equally wild 
men, but always trusting in the Lord. He was certainly a great 
preacher and a very remarkable man. Over sixty years ago we 
heard him preach from the text: "What shall it profit a man if he 
gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?" and we have never 
forgotten the text, the sermon, nor the man. His widow died here 
in 1895, and his sons are all gone, except Washington S. The 
descendants of J. Fletcher and G. Wesley are still in our midst, and 
rank among our very best people. His death was peaceful, and 
triumphant. Many of his descendants are valued citizens of Mount 

"So fades a summer cloud away. 
So sinks the gale when storms are o'er; 
So gently shuts the eye of day. 
So dies a wave along the shore." 


Dr. John Watson came to Jefferson county in 1 82 1 , "squat- 
ting" for the winter at Mulberry Hill until next spring. John H. 
and Asa B. built a large crib on their claim north of town (the old 
Watson place), and they moved to it. In this they lived until the 

86 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

hickory log house was built. They tended a crop near Union the 
first year, but had their own place ready for business by the next 
season. The head of the family was a physician — the first to locate 
in the county. His quinine cost him ten dollars and fifty cents an 
ounce, and he sent east for an ounce of veratrum, and it cost him 
forty dollars, which showed that there were "trusts" in those days 
as well as now, but they would not trust the country doctor for 
medicines. The people in those days were quite healthy and never 
thought of having the new-fangled diseases that prevail in this en- 
lightened age. The doctor found time to assess the entire county, 
and still keep up his practice, for which service he received seventeen 
dollars — about enough to buy an ounce of quinine. The dressed 
fawn-skin in which he carried his Assessor's books is still in the 
Clerk's office. He left the farm work entirely to the boys, while he 
attended to his professional and official duties. The wife died 
March 3d, and the doctor died June 3, 1845, beloved and respected 
by all who knew them. Their children were : Virginia, who married 
John Summers, whose mill and home east of town was always con- 
sidered the most hospitable place in all the country; John H., who 
married Betsy Rankin, and their children were: John R., who mar- 
ried and died in Iowa; William D., who at an advanced age, re- 
sides in Colorado, and has raised a large family; Thomas P., who 
recently died without offspring; Milly F., beloved wife of the 
writer; Samuel H., long prominent in the politics of Jefferson county, 
now residing in Los Angeles, California; Joel P., postmaster at 
Ashley; Dr. J. H., practicing physician at Woodlawn; Amelia, de- 
ceased, wife of B. S. Miller, and Nancy, who died in youth. Then 
came William B., who married the Leonard girl and who resided 
in St. Louis. Then Asa B., who married Diana Ham, and their 
children were: Andrew J., Thomas J.. Mrs. Lydia Collins, Mrs. 
Carrie Pavey, Mrs. Lew ToUe, Mrs. Hal Goodwin and Mrs. R. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 87 

House. Then came Joel F., for many years County Clerk, and 
who married Elder Taylor's daughter, and they were the parents of 
Doctor Walter, Attorney Albert and Howard Watson. The latter 
lived in St. Louis, and died but recently. Joel's second wife is 
still living — a noble. Christian woman, who was Tom Pace's 
widow. The youngest was Harry M., who married a Cummins, 
and left two daughters, both now living in the far West. 


Downing Baugh came early, acted well his part as a business 
man. Judge, Justice of the Peace, enterprising and useful citizen, 
and above all, as a Christian. Some years ago he moved to Mc- 
Gregor, Iowa, and but recently died there at a ripe old age of — 
perhaps ninety-five. He left his imprint on the early history of 
Mount Vernon, and left with us his posterity, of which we are just- 
ly proud. His children were: Mrs. J. J. Fly, who is still with us, 
at an advanced age, and is the mother of Walter, Oscar and Ad- 
dison Fly, and Mrs. Carrie Spiese and Amy, at home; Mrs. H. H. 
Wilkerson, who moved to Chicago and died; Thomas J. (dead) ; 
John W., our well known express agent — whose children are: 
Frank and Nellie; Joe V., the present editor of the Mount Vernon 
News, whose children are: Ernest and Harry, and Mrs. "Hat' 
Thurston, living in Dakota. The writer well remembers being one 
of the charivari party who "serenaded" Mrs. Fly and Mrs. Wilker- 
son — both having been married the same night, over fifty years ago. 
The Baughs then lived on what is now Herrin's corner. We were 
sent over to Aunt Mariah's, who kept gingerbread and cider about 
where George Carter now lives, for the "treat" and it was a good 
one — ^just such a one as Aunt Mariah (colored) delighted to give. 

88 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 


Joel Pace, tiring of the carking cares of office, moved to his 
farm (now General Pavey's home) and began to raise his own 
corn-dodgers. Flis twin brother, Joseph, was doing the same on 
his farm, south of town. Both had interesting and industrious fam- 
ilies. Uncle Joel's children were: Charles T. (than whom Mount 
Vernon never had a better citizen) ; Dr. W. C, of Ashley; Samuel 
F., who died early; Edward C, who became banker, and died at 
Ashley; Newton C, deceased, who was captain in the army, and 
afterwards, for several years. Mayor of his native town; Addison 
M., who chose the great West as his home; Mrs. James Haynes 
(mother of George M., lawyer and historian) ; and Mrs. General 
Pavey, still on the "old hill." Aunt ParmeHa went home in 1877, 
and Uncle Joel followed her in 1879 — having served the town and 
county long and well. He has been extensively noticed in pre- 
ceding chapters. 

Uncle Joseph Pace died near the same time, full of years and 
honors that always come to a good man, who loves his neighbors, 
and serves God. He was father of Thompson Pace, so well known 
by many yet living; also of Mrs. George and James Dillingham; 
Mrs. Black Allen and Mary. None of the Paces have ever brought 
reproach upon themselves or upon Jefferson county. 

There are many other families that deserve special mention, 
such as the Summers, the Andersons, the Mills, the Shorts, the 
Grays, the Baltzels, the Bowmans, the Newbys and many others of 
the very early days, but for the present we must hasten on, and as 
we have already given a brief account of the first marriage, perhaps 
we had bfetter refer to the second one — or rather to the three in 
one; six souls that beat as three, were made happy just over the 
line of what is now Shiloh township. The Maxeys and Caseys had 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO.. ILL. 89 

already "mixed up" considerably and they seemed to like it. Mr. 
Maxey had a house full of pretty girls, and the Caseys wanted 
them, so it was determined that on a certain evening Thomas M. 
Casey (afterwards Uncle Tommy) and Harriet Maxey, Abraham 
Casey and Vylinda Maxey, and Bennett N. Maxey and Sally 
Overbay (who was raised by the Maxeys and went by that name) 
should be made one — no, we mean three — the first, and perhaps 
the only triple wedding that ever took place in the county. 

In the "good old times" of which we write, it was the correct 
thing for a man to be the head of a family, and for a woman to be 
the queen of the household. Loving and working together, without 
impairing each other's personality or individuality, was the rule. 
They seemed to realize that the strongest worldly love is that of 
husband and wife — that love that makes "two hearts beat as one" 
— that love that unites them not only in acts of conjugal bliss, but 
in every department of life made them feel that they were not 
"unequally yoked together." To this usual mode of everyday life 
we attribute much of the "harmony of those days" when elope- 
ments and divorces were unheard of — when happy marriages was 
the rule and not the exception. 

The identical evening came, so did everybody, and the 
pranks, jests and capers and good, hearty laughs that rang out on 
the night air, would have shamed a modern charivari party. But 
the triple ceremony was performed, everything went merry as a 
half dozen marriage bells, until after the repast. Then it was dis- 
covered that it was growing late — too late to go home till mormng, 
and the house, although large, contained but one room — and what 
should be done with these six, nay, three, hearts that beat as one, 
two, three. After the old folks got their heads together, it was de- 
cided to erect beds for them in the cook-shed and smoke-house. All 
hands turned out and with poles and clap-boards, they had soon 

90 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

erected three bedsteads, wonderful to behold, but sufficiently sub- 
stantial for the occasion, and two of the happy pairs were disposed 
of in the smoke-house and the other in the cook-shed. It was an 
event long to be remembered — in fact, the most remarkable event 
of the kind that has ever occurred in Jefferson county. But it was 
pertinent as showing what the Caseys and Maxeys could do when 
they "put their heads together," after which it was always an easy 
matter to get other things going their way. And the Casey-Maxey 
combination was largely typical of many other "old settlers'* of 
Jefferson county. 



Hard to Get — Better Roads. Badly Needed — Railroads — 
Lots of Them. 

Who turns his back when the winds blow chill. 
And wails "Alack," when his luck is ill, 
May never possess the pride of soul — 
He earns who battles and gains the goal. 

In addition to what may be termed the commercial aspect of 
good roads, they have a highly important social aspect as well. 
They bring the farmer into closer touch with the world at large. 
He and his family are not forced to remain at home for days at a 
time because the condition of the roads make traveling unpleasant, 
if not difficult. Good roads insure efficient and prompt rural mail 
deliveries, placing the newspapers on the table of the farmer early 
on the day of publication, enabling him to transact much of his 
business by mail and to take advantage of early information as to 
fluctuations in the prices of his farm products. Good roads mean 
that the farmer and the members of his family can enjoy to a 
greater degree the society of their neighbors and friends in the town 
and country. They mean that his children can be more regular in 
school attendance, and can receive to a greater degree the ad- 
vantages of education. They mean the bringing closer together of 
the town and country, with advantages on both sides, for as the 

92 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

farmer is benefited by being brought into closer touch with the 
town, so all the business interests of the town prosper as the result 
of the facility with which the farmer and his family can do their 
shopping. Good roads also benefit the inhabitants of towns and 
cities by affording facilities for pleasant country drives. They in- 
vite the business man to the establishment of country and suburban 
homes, such as he can enjoy only when he is assured that the con- 
dition of the roads will be such as to enable him to reach his place 
of business promptly in all kinds of weather. 

Everybody knows that good roads are good things, and that 
nothing is more conducive to good business than good roads. 
Among the improvements of any country, nothing is more important 
than its roads or highways. Civilization is judged by its roads. In 
this chapter we will speak of our roads and railroads, taking them 
as they came in. When Mount Vernon was first laid off it had no 
roads — not even by-paths, and the pioneers had their cabins, their 
clearings, the public buildings and the public roads all to make. 
First, as to wagon roads, for it was many years before railroads 
were even dreamed of. First, we allude to the 


At the beginning the Goshen road was the only one running 
into or through the county, and it crossed what is now the Fairfield 
road, four miles east of the site of Mount Vernon. The County 
Commissioners made several efforts to get a road viewed and laid 
out before they succeeded. Several times committees were ap- 
pointed to view and lay out certain roads, but time passed and no 
road. Finally, James Abbott, William Jordan and Reuben Jack- 
son reported that they had viewed and selected a line for a road 
running through Mount Vernon, beginning at or near the southeast 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 93 

corner of the county and up through Jordan's Prairie, on the north. 
The report was accepted and the road ordered, eighteen feet wide. 
Uncle Joseph Pace was the surveyor, G. P. and A. P. Casey, 
chain carriers. Jordan and Abbott had a bottle of whiskey. After 
drinking, they offered it to Uncle Joe Pace ; he took the bottle and 
emptied its contents on the ground. The road was opened and most 
of it is used to this day. The bridge across Casey's Fork of Muddy 
was the only one to be built, and Ben Hood and Canton Wilkey 
built it for forty-four dollars and fifteen cents. The Vandalia road 
was the next opened, but it took a long time to make people believe 
it was a permanent highway. The 


came next, which accommodated the Grand Prairie people in get- 
ting to town. With a few changes the same is the Richview road of 
today. Next the 


ordered to cross the Middle Fork of Muddy, near Shiloh meeting 
house and the West Fork, at or near Hamblin's. Then came the 


bossed by John Summers, who had located over the creek, and be- 
gan business with his mill, on the D. H. Warren place. In the main 
what was then made the aforesaid road is the Fairfield road of to- 
day. Then came the 


Several routes were viewed and selected and some of them even 
adopted, but really no road until 1837, when the Pinckneyville 

94 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

road was made and located, mostly where the same road now runs, 
except as to various wmdings. 

In alluding to these roads we have not attempted to give de- 
tails, but simply referred to results, the very thing sought by the 
pioneers and the one thing needed — open roads. After these diffi- 
cult — that is, difficult to secure and difficult to follow, 
highways were duly opened, other roads "too numerous to 
mention" became the order of the day throughout the county. 
Among them was a road across the southwest corner of the county — 
the Nashville and Equality road. Another from Salem to Chester 
across the northwest part of the county. In 1 839 a new state road 
from McLeansboro to Mount Vernon was located. Later a road 
was laid out from the academy to Short's Mill on the creek and 
thence east into the wilderness; the Richview and Farrmgton road 
crossing the Salem road near Pleasant Grove ; the Frog Island road ; 
the Ashley and Spring Garden ; one from Rome to the Carlyle road ; 
the Mount Vernon and Lynchburg road; the Spring Garden and 
Tamaroa road; one from Lynchburg to Ham's Grove and many 
others — so many in fact, that strangers are always in doubt which 
road to take. Many of them, like a snake, wriggle in and wriggle 
out, leaving the traveler still in doubt whether the snake that made 
the tract is going north or coming back. No attention was paid to 
section or township lines in the laying out of these roads and much 
valuable land has been impaired by their various windings. Of course 
the personal interests of the "viewers" and others cut coniderable ice 
in the formation and subsequent preambulation of these roads. And 
we may truthfully say that under township organization, we have 
very expensive roads and very few really good ones — especially in 
winter, when good roads are needed. Unfortunately we have noth- 
ing to make roads of — except dust or mud. But the time is com- 
ing when we will import the material and malie good roads. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 95 


When our pioneers were viewing and laying off the wagon 
roads alluded to above, they had never dreamed of having a rail- 
road into or through Jefferson county. But about 1836 and from 
that on, they began to dream and dream until the railroad fever fully 
set in. In that year the Illinois Central road was chartered and our 
people wanted it but only got about four hundred yards of it across 
the northwestern corner of the county — although in 1 852 when the 
road was really built, the surveyors ran a survey through Mount 
Vernon in charge of B. G. Roots, and made us think we already 
heard the toot, toot of the iron-horse. Of course a great mistake 
was made by not locating the road through Mount Vernon and 
Jefferson county. The Legislature had a crazy fit in the session 
of 1836-7-8 and attempted to cover the whole state with railroads 
at once — one from Cairo to Galena, one from Shawneetown to 
Alton — and several in the central and northern part of the state — 
in all about fifteen hundred miles. The result was a debt of fourteen 
million dollars, and a "jerkwater" road from Springfield to the Illi- 
nois river on the west — about a hundred miles, worth perhaps one 
hundred thousand dollars. By the efforts of Noah Johnston in the 
Senate and H. T. Pace in the House an act was passed which gave 
us an interest in two hundred thousand dollars that was appropriated 
to counties that failed to get any railroads. But we missed the 
railroad, and missed getting the money — except one hundred and 
fifty dollars secured by the persistent efforts of H. T. Pace — part 
of what we were entitled to from the sale of the "Saline lands." 
Then railroad excitement died out until 1851-2, when the Illinois 
Central was again chartered, and the work actually begun. Then 
the fever broke out again. The Sangamon & Massac road was 
chartered, Jefferson county being represented in the company by J. 

96 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

M. Johnson, Z. Casey, T. M. Casey and H. T. Pace, but there 
the thing stopped. Another was the "Mount Vernon Railroad Com- 
pany" with Z. Casey, H. T. Pace, S. H. Anderson, Q. A. Wil- 
banks, J. R. Allen, S. K. Allen, S. W. Carpenter and B. F. Wood, 
as charter members — to build a road from Mount Vernon, tapping 
the Central at some point to be determined — it didn't tap. 

The following document will show that Mount Vernon's prom- 
inent citizens were in earnest in trying to secure a railroad : 

We, the undersigned citizens of the county of Jefferson and 
state of Illinois, in consideration that any person or association of 
persons, organized or incorporated under and by virtue of any act of 
the Legislature of the state of Illinois now in force, or under and by 
virtue of any act of the Legislature aforesaid which may hereafter 
be enacted, will and shall build, construct and equip a railroad from 
the town of Ashley, in Washington county and state of Illinois, 
the town of Mt. Vernon, in Jefferson county and state of Illinois, 
either as a separate and distinct road or forming a portion of a 
through road running to the town of Fairfield in Wayne county, Illi- 
nois, or to any other point east of Fairfield, within a reasonable 
time from this date, do hereby agree, undertake and bind ourselves 
and each of us to grant and convey by good and sufficient deed or 
deeds of conveyance in law and equity the quantity and description 
of lands situated in said county of Jefferson and annexed to and set 
opposite our names to any such person, or association of persons 
organized and incorporated as aforesaid, so soon as such person, 
or association of persons, incorporated and organized as aforesaid, 
shall give securities or guarantees sufficient to satisfy any number of 
persons not exceeding five whom we, or such portion of us shall in 
any public meeting at the court-house, in Mt. Vernon, called for 
the purpose upon ten days' notice, designate and appoint, that said 
railroad will be constructed and equipped within a reasonable time, 
as aforesaid, from this date. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 97 

Mt. Vernon, Illinois, April 10, 1858. 

W. B. Thorn 80 

H. B. Newby 80 

W. D. Green 80 

H. T. Pace 80 

T. B. Tanner 80 

Thomas L. Moss 40 

Charles Mason 10 

A. P. Elkins 40 

John Waite 40 

C. M. Daily 40 

W. H. Herdman 40 

J. Q. A. Bay 20 

J. M. Pace 80 

S. T. Brown 10 

C. Johnson 40 

E. V. Satterfield 20 

J. F. Watson 40 

Joel Pace 80 

Abraham Marlow authorizes W. D. G. to subcribe 20 

James B. Tolle 80 

D. G. Anderson 80 

Dan Baltzell 80 

D. C. Warren 80 

Dr. G. authorized to subcribe for Willoughby Adams 40 

In 1850 Congress gave Illinois the swamp lands within her 
borders for educational and internal improvements, and the state 
in turn gave each county the same lands within its borders for the 
purposes named. Jefferson county's share was about nineteen thou- 
sand acres and at an election held in 1855 the proposition to do- 


98 • wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

nate these lands to the construction of a railroad carried. Proposi- 
tions were made by foreigners to build the road, but not accepted. 
Then Governor Casey founded a company under the name and 
style of Van Duzer, Smith & Co. and to this company the work was 
awarded, signed by Z. Casey, and A. M. Grant as president and 
secretary of the old company. Subscriptions were opened at An- 
derson & Mills' store and forty thousand dollars soon subcribed 
and partly paid in. The work began to boom. The track was cleared 
from Ashley to Mount Vernon and the road-bed partly finished. 
Van Duzer, Smith & Co. were everybody's pets ; they went in debt 
to everybody. Ties were piled along the line; they got money 
from Shackelford & Givens and had our trustee give them a deed 
for four thousand acres of the swamp lands; Dr. Green and others 
found themselves grantors for them to the tune of ten thousand dol- 
lars. One of them had married one of our handsomest ladies; Van 
Duzen took five hundred thousand dollars in bonds to New York 
to sell and it is said his report is not yet in. Work began to drag — 
slower every day; and then — the work ceased — and the whole en- 
terprise was a dismal failure. The grantors attached what little 
was left — virtually nothing ; Smith went back to New York and his 
wife was reported rich, but he owned nothing; Van Duzer went 
to Michigan and later to the penitentiary and Goetschins died in 
Paducah, Kentucky. The company forfeited everything. The 
old company recovered the franchise and the road-bed was sold at 
Springfield and bought in for the company through Thomas Hobbs 
for a mere pittance. To recover contingencies, a new charter was 
formed for the Ashley & Mount Vernon Railroad by Z. Casey, H. 
T. Pace, J. R. Allen, W. D. Green, T. B. Tarmer, C. T. Pace 
and Noah Johnson. Then came others who wanted to build the 
road, or rather wanted the lands, and after much maneuvering and 
scheming and so forth and so on, bonds for one hundred thousand 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 99 

dollars was voted by the people of the county for the building of 
the road through the county. After many efforts and many propo- 
sitions had failed, a new company got a charter for a railroad from 
St. Louis to Shawneetown and took the name of the St. Louis & 
Southeastern Railroad Co. This company was composed of Orvil 
Pool, James H. Wilson, J. J. Castles, S. K. Casey, W. D. Green, 
T. H. Hobbs and E. F. Winslow — all old residents, except Gen- 
eral Wilson, who was General Grant's chief of staff during war, and 
General Winslow, who built the Brough road by the Vandalia, 
sold out for one hundred thousand dollars and became a railroad 
man. And the contract was finally let to Winslow & Wilson, prin- 
cipally through Dr. Green, who had definitely learned that it was 
the best way to subserve Mount Vernon's interests. After all the 
efforts and many besides. Mount Vernon's first railroad, the St. 
Louis & Southeastern (now Louisville & Nashville Railroad) was 
completed in 1869-70, using the original road-bed from Mount 
Vernon to Ashley, made in 1858 by Van Duzer, Smith & Co., and 
instead of obtaining a "bob-tailed" road as the projectors were often 
twitted with, we secured what later proved to be one of the best 
trunk lines running from the Southeast to the great Northwest. 
Mount Vernon also secured extensive and valuable car shops that 
largely increased our population and wealth. These shops were un- 
fortunately burned down in 1878, but speedily rebuilt. Later, 
the work was removed to Howell, Indiana, and the buildings were 
leased to the Mount Vernon Car Manufacturing Company (of 
which, more hereater). The boom that struck Mount Vernon with 
the coming of the first railroad has had a few lulls, but has never 
ceased, and now that it is one of the best railroad centers in the 
southern part of the state, its destiny is intimately linked with future 
prosperity. And for this we should not forget that we are largely 
indebted to the public-spirited gentlemen of our county named in 
connection with the securing of this first road. 

100 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

Prior to this time a Marion and Jefferson county railroad was 
chartered ; also the Shawneetown branch of the Illinois Central, both 
to run through Mount Vernon, and still others, but — "nothing do- 
ing," or nothing done with these roads. 


A road was undertaken from Alton to Mount Carmel, money 
borrowed and the road begun by Gen. William Pickering. He 
spent all the money he could get and all he had himself and made 
the road-bed from Princeton, Indiana, to Albion, Illinois, then 
failed, but retained the ownership of the franchise and road-bed, 
which he sold to Bluford Wilson and others — his heirs getting four- 
teen thousand dollars only for it. The purchasers, after 
dickering around for a long time, got matters in shape to continue 
work on the road — finally changing its name to the Louisville & St. 
Louis Railroad Company, and adding several branches. It reached 
Mount Vernon in 1883. For a year or two its western terminus 
was Mount Vernon, running its trains to St. Louis over the Louis- 
ville & Nashville, but it was finally built to St. Louis, via Rome and 
Centralia, and after achieving success, was transferred to the sys- 
tem of the Great Southern road — this giving us another trunk line 
east and west and adding still more to our population and wealth. 
The Southern has become a very popular road and that without 
costing Jefferson county many thousands of dollars, as the first road 
did. Jefferson county paid good and well for its first road. 


principally through the persistent efforts of Judge James R. Driver, 
was built to the town of Drivers, four miles west of Mount Vernon 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 101 

on the Louisville & Nashville (sending its trains here over that 
line), was operated a few years and sold to the Chicago, Burlington 
& Quincy, and now runs south through the county, crossing the 
Louisville & Nashville at Woodlawn, passing through Woodlawn, 
Cravat, Waltonville and Emerson City. 


road was extended to Mount Vernon in the eighties and is another 
valuable link of road — especially, locally. It is destined to be con- 
tinued to Terre Haute, Indiana, and become part of another trunk 
line system. It is doing a fine local business, and is chiefly under 
the management of C. B. Cole, of Chester. 


Railroad Company built into Mount Vernon a few years ago, and 
this link formed part of another trunk line, the Frisco system, which 
runs all over the West and South. This gives us a direct line to 
Chicago, as good as the one we ought to have had years before. It 
runs to the Ohio river and crosses the Mississippi river at Thebes and 
takes in the entire Southwest. It is a fine road and cost the county 

So it will be seen that Mount Vernon and Jefferson county are 
"fixed" so far as railroads are concerned — making the county seat 
one of the most desirable railroad centers in all the region round 
about. Certainly our "internal improvements" are keeping pace 
with those of other inland counties of the great Prairie state. 

In conclusion we may say that we have in Jefferson county 
about four hundred and fifty miles of railroad track (including the 
sidings at the different towns), fifteen depot buildings and other 

102 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

valuable railroad property, upon which the county derives a good 
revenue. We have facilities for traveling in every direction, two 
or three times every day, and instead of driving our hogs and geese 
to Shawneetown or St. Louis, while we hauled our chickens and 
eggs and hides, as we used to, we have a home market for them at 
good prices, and what we want from the cities can be laid at our 
doors on twenty-four hours' notice. Where it used to take us a full 
week to go to St. Louis and do our little trading, we can now go in 
the morning, do a days' business and be home by bed-time. What 
would the first settlers of Mount Vernon have thought of the vision- 
ary who had the spirit of optimism so deeply implanted in him as to 
prophesy that all this would come to pass within the natural life- 
time of one man? It teaches us that instead of adopting the pessi- 
mistic wail of 

"The world's a hollow bubble, don't you know? 
Just a painted piece of trouble, don't you know?" 
we should mount the higher plane of optimism, and proclaim from 
the hill-tops 

"The chap who humps and never stops 

To register complaints. 
May lack the wisdom of the wise. 

The perfectness of saints; 
And what is more, mayn't know what 'tis 

To bear a famous name. 
But, spite o' what the neighbors say. 
He gets there just the same. 





Supreme and Appellate Courts. The Bar, etc. The Sacred- 
ness of the Law. 

"Oh make Thou us, through centuries long, 
In peace secure, in justice strong; 
Around our gift of freedom draw 
The safeguards of Thy righteous law; 
And cast in some diviner mold, 
Let the new cycle shame the old!" 

In these days of light thinking and still lighter talking about 
the law and the courts, it is well to get back towards the old land- 
marks and understand that the perpetuation of our liberties depend 
largely upon an honest and intelligent bar. It is by the courts that 
criminals are apprehended and punished; it is through these courts 
that wrongs are redressed, and the innocent given their liberty. Com- 
ing nearer home, we can truly say that Mount Vernon may well be 
termed the seat of justice— the home of Judges. In 1848, the 
Supreme Court was located here, and the state has spent consider- 
able money in buildings and equipments, and today Mount Vernon 
has a fine state court-house and contains one of the best law-li- 
braries in the state. The first term of the Supreme Court was held 
here in 1848, with S. H. Treat, Chief Justice, and J. D. Caton and 
Lyman Trumbull, Associates; Finney D. Preston, Clerk. In 1854 

104 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

Preston resigned the clerkship and Noah Johnson was appointed. 
In 1855 Treat resigned, and O. C. Skinner elected to the vacancy, 
but Scates was made Chief Justice, but in 1857 Caton came in as 
Chief Justice and Sidney Breeze was elected in Scates' place. In 
1870 the new constitution increased the number of judges from 
three to seven, making seven districts instead of three. In 1878 
Breeze died, and D. F. Baker succeeded him, and J. H. Mulkey 
succeeded Baker. In 1867 R. A. D. Wilbanks (Bob) was elected 
Clerk; in 1878 J. O. Chance succeeded him. Until the court-house 
was ready for use, the court held its sessions in the basement of the 
Odd Fellows old hall, and in the Masonic hall, over J. Pace & 
Son. T. B. Tanner, Major Johnston, Z. Casey, W. J. Stephenson 
and J. N. Johnson were selected to superintend the building of the 
Supreme Court House, and Tanner, who had been sent to Legis- 
lature, obtained ten thousand dollars and the building was finished 
and is a credit to the state. 

Among the men who occupied the bench of this court, perhaps 
there was none better equipped for the place than our Carlyle 
neighbor. Judge Sidney Breeze. He had served as State's Attorney, 
Attorney for Illinois under President Adams, and had been a 
member of the United States Senate, in all of which positions he 
proved himself competent. Many good things might be said of him, 
truthfully, but his record is in the hands of the people. 


one of our own legal jewels, needs but a brief notice at our hands. 
Although "brought up in the woods", he was a man of excellent 
repute, a useful citizen of Mount Vernon, a superior judge of law 
and a pure citizen without guile. He ranked among the best and 
most honorable judges of the state, and was withal a Christian gen- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 105 

tleman of the old school. After leaving Mount Vernon, he located 
in Chicago and held positions of honor and trust there. When 
Lyman Trumbull was elected to the United States Senate, Judge 
Scates succeeded him on the Supreme Bench. 

Baker, Mulkey, Breeze, Scates, Koerner, and all who came 
to the Supreme Bench from our part of the state, proved themselves 
the peers of the best talent from the northern part of the state, as 
well as from other states. 

The new Constitution provided for the creation of Appellate 
Courts after 1874 in districts made for that purpose, to which ap- 
peals from the Circuit Courts could be taken. Such Courts to be 
held by Judges of the Circuit Courts, as provided by law. Under 
this provision this was made the Fourth District, with three Judges. 
On the organzation of the court for this the Fourth District with 
headquarters at Mount Vernon, T. B. Tanner, J. C. Allen and 
George W. Wall were assigned by the Supreme Court to Appellate 
duty. Judge Tanner became presiding Judge and Wilbanks, Clerk, 
by virtue of his Supreme Court clerkship. In 1879 Judges Wall, 
Baker and F. S. Casey came to the Appellate Bench. This court 
greatly relieved the Supreme Court, where much business had ac- 


No member of our Jefferson county bar ever became so thor- 
oughly identified with every material interest of the town and county 
as did T. B. Tanner. He came to this county in 1846 and took 
charge of the public schools and afterward assumed the editorship 
of the Jeffersonian, the only paper published here. In 1849 he was 
siezed with the gold fever and went to California, but returned the 
next year and was elected Circuit Clerk, served two years, resigned 
to give place to John S. Bogan. He then entered the practice of 

106 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

law with T. S. Casey, and in 1854 was elected to the Legislature 
and secured favors for Mount Vernon in aid of the building of the 
Supreme Court House. In 1862 he was elected to the Constitu- 
tional Convention. In 1867 he was a candidate for Judge, but 
James M. Pollock, another Mount Vernon Judge, was elected. 
Four years later he was elected over Pollock and Colonel Crebs, of 
Carmi. At the expiration of his term he took up the practice of 
law, and held his own against all comers. He was a profound 
lawyer and kept up with all the decisions. To his clients he was 
honest and just, and if his patron did not have a good case he would 
frankly tell him so. He married Governor Stinson Anderson's 
daughter, Sarah, who is still living among us. On the bench he was 
diligent and painstaking, sifting every case and bringing to the front 
all the equities. Of unimpeachable integrity, a better and purer man 
never sat in judgment. Tanner still lives in the hearts of our Jef- 


was another Jefferson county product — a son of Governor Casey. 
He was educated at McKendree College, and after securing the 
degree of Master of Arts, studied law with Hugh Montgomery, 
and in 1854 was admitted to the bar. Elected State's Attorney 
in 1860 and re-elected in 1864. In 1862 he entered the United 
States army as colonel of the One Hundred and Tenth Illinois 
Volunteer Infantry. He participated in the battles of Perryville, 
Stone River and several minor conflicts. On his return home he re- 
sumed his professional labors, discharging the duties of Prosecuting 
Attorney until 1868. In 1870 he was elected to the Legislature 
and in 1 872 to the State Senate, where his noted father had served 
years before. In 1879 he was elected Circuit Judge and assigned 
to duty on the Appellate Bench. In politics he was always a hard- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 107 

shell Democrat. He married Miss Matilda Moran, of Springfield, 
and died in 1 890. 


settled in Fairfield in 1 844, and was a few years later made Judge 
of this Circuit for six years. We believe the old Judge is still liv- 
ing in Fairfield — totally blind. Circuit Court commenced in this 
county in 1819, with Judge Wilson presiding and has been in 
business ever since. It is impossible as well as undesirable, to fol- 
low up the succession. Suffice it to say, we have had many learned 
judges and many important cases since then. In 1 838 we find that 
Downing Baugh was indicted for peddling clocks without a license, 
but he was not convicted and the very next year was elected Circuit 
Judge. In 1841 an indictment for murder was returned against 
Rolin Bradley for the murder of Elijah King in Elk Prairie. He 
was pronounced guilty and sentenced to he hanged. A gallows was 
erected on the road, somewhere this side of Newby's and stood 
there for many years. We well remember how we boys used to 
"shy around" it when we had been out "plugging" watermelons. 
Bluford Hayes took a petition to Springfield for reprieve and got 
back with the papers just in time to disappoint one of the largest 
crowds that had ever assembled in the county. Bluford wqs there- 
after very unpopular because he had interfered with the exhibition 
and many believed as long as they lived that the jury was right when 
they said "hang." The jury consisted of Coly Smith, W. M. Ful- 
ler, John H. Watson, S. B. Shelton, B. McConnell, Jesse Phillips, 
Downing Baugh, John Holt, D. McLaughlin, Joel Smith, Ed 
Owens and W. Gibberson. 

Judge Scates was on the bench from 1837 to 1840, then Judge 
Denning to 1846 — when Judge Baugh came in. Marshall came 
back from Congress and presided till 1 865 and then Judge Pollock 

108 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

came and was succeeded by Judge Tanner, and then Casey. Since 
then we have had as Circuit Judges: Allen, Creighton, Pierce, 
Newlin and other residents of other counties — all good Judges, 


was another member of the bar of this county whose light was not 
to be hid. He came with his father's family to Mount Vernon in 
1846. He was the son of Dr. Duff Green, Sr., whose ashes sleep 
in Old Union cemetery, and a brother of Dr. W. Duff Green, who 
was for so many years prominent in Mount Vernon's history. After 
teaching school, he read law with Judge Scates and was made 
a lawyer in 1 852. He moved to Metropolis, then to Cairo, and be- 
came prominent both in the law and in politics. He died about a 
dozen years ago, at his home in Cairo. 


was another Jefferson county boy struggling up to manhood. He 
read law with R. F. Wingate, and was admitted to the bar in 1 845 ; 
went to the Legislature in 1846 and voted for S. A. Douglas for 
Senator. For two years he was a law partner of Judge Breeze. In 
1852 he moved to Texas and was elected Prosecuting Attorney 
and made financial agent of the state. In 1861 he was sent to the 
Texas Senate, the one that passed the ordinance of secession ; voted 
for Wigfall for Senator of the Confederate states, and of course for 
Jeff Davis for President of the same. He returned to Illinois in 
1 866 and located at Centralia for the practice of law. He and Cap- 
tain S. L. Dwight had an extensive practice, until he died and Cap- 
tain Dwight was elevated to the Circuit Bench. He was a son of 
Green P., a nephew and son-in-law of Governor Zadok Casey. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 109 


was another Mount Vernon lawyer for many years, and all ad- 
mitted that he was a good one. He also held forth at Shawneetown, 
Old Frankfort and Metropolis. While at this place last he had some 
experience — more than he wanted. He arrayed himself with the 
law-and-order party as against the "Flatheads," something like the 
Kentucky Regulators, and they tried to "get him," but he got away 
from them and came to Mount Vernon. He was a man of more 
than ordinary ability and rose to distinction without friends or 
money. His intellect, legal erudition and unbending integrity com- 
manded confidence and respect wherever he was known. Jasper 
Partridge was a partner with him, but in 1861 he raised Company I 
of the Forty-fourth Illinois Volunteer Infantry and became cap- 
tain of same, and located at Carmi after the war until he died. 


came in 1872 and joined teams with George M. Haynes in the law. 
He was elected State's Attorney in 1876, and to the Legislature in 
1882, then moved to Chicago where he now resides. 


graduated in the law at Ann Arbor, Michigan, and was admitted 
to the bar in 1870. In 1872 he was elected State's Attorney and 
served four years. In 1877 he was sent to the Legislature and 
moved to Texas, where he is quite prominent in his profession and 
in politics. 


was a Jefferson county boy, son of Willis Keller, grew up to be a 
good lawyer, was admitted to the bar in 1873 and elected County 

110 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

Judge in 1877, serving acceptably for four years. He edited a 
Democratic paper here and moved to Texas several years ago and is 
doing well there. 


another Jefferson county production, admitted to the bar in 1876; 
practiced here for several years and moved to Danville, Illinois, 
where he ranks with the most successful practitioners. 


for many years the acknowledged head of the Mount Vernon bar. 
came here just before the war, taught school and worked about. 
Was elected County Clerk in 1865, served until 1869, then pur- 
sued the practice of law with diligence until his death, which oc- 
curred a few years ago. He was a leading Mason, and a promi- 
nent man in politics — always a Democrat — public-spirited in all 
local enterprises and a valuable citizen of the town and greatly 
missed when he died. 


came to Mount Vernon in 1857 and entered upon the practice of 
law. In 1864 he was elected Circuit Judge, and was re-elected. 
He was a good lawyer, a Presbyterian and a Democrat. He 
died some time in the eighties. 


son of J. M., obtained license and began the practice of law here, 
but now holds a legal position of some kind at Washington, D. C. 
He married Judge Grant's daughter. May. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 1 1 1 


was born in Mount Vernon in 1 826, among the first male children 
coming into the world in Mount Vernon. He was a "fixture" here 
during his natural life. Nearly everybody knew him and it may 
be nearer the truth to say that he knew everybody in the county, for 
he was almost a walkmg encyclopedia of knowledge of things per- 
tainmg to Jefferson county and we personally regret his absence as 
we try to lasso facts for this volume. He certainly would be of 
very great help to us now and our life-long friendship would, we 
feel certam, insure us this assistance. For several years he was 
County School Superintendent and when a city charter was 
granted to Mount Vernon, he became its first Mayor. He and his 
wife died within a year of each other, leaving Judge W. T. Pace 
and Mrs. Bitrolf, surviving children. 


was a promising young lawyer, admitted to the bar in 1879, elected 
State's Attorney in 1 880. He served faithfully. 


admitted in 1870, was a partner of Seth Crews and drifted to Chi- 
cago with him and has served as Corporation Counsel and other 
important places. George is one of these good, whole-souled fel- 
lows that we read about, but seldom meet. He was a grandson 
of Joel Pace and a better historian than we ever expect to be. 


admitted to the bar in 1867, for twelve years was Clerk of the 
Supreme Court, but was generally too busy with politics to do much 
at the law. He has been dead several years. 

112 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 


was a character we had nearly forgotten, but he knew a great deal 
of law, but went to the West to grow up with the country, 

wasn't very slow at the law and married D. C. Morrison's daughter. 

is still trying to imitate Blackstone down in Gallatin county. 


too, was a great lawyer, but he gloried more in military achieve- 
ments and we have not his legal record, but his military history is 
given elsewhere. 


was a lawyer, but he didn't practice here, was only Clerk of the Su- 
preme Court. 


admitted — well, he admitted himself; anyhow, he knew a good deal 
of common law. 

This concludes the members of the bar who are "absent with- 
out leave" — who have "appealed their cases to the higher court" — 
and we feel it proper and right that we turn our pencil upon the 
legal lights who are still with us, cumber the earth with their pres- 
ence, as follows: 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 113 

JOEL F. WATSON. We take our young friend, Joel F., first, 
because we believe in putting our young men to the front and be- 
cause Joel F. Watson, Sr., was an honored name among our pio- 
neers. He was the grandfather of our youngest attorney whose 
name he bears. Joel was recently graduated from a noted Texas 
law school, married a Texas belle and came home to embark in the 
practice of the profession as a partner of his father, Albert Watson. 
He is now serving as Master in Chancery, and has a bright future 
before him. 

WILLIAM T. PACE, son of James M. Pace, and the grand- 
son of Harvey T. Pace, is too well known to be presented to the 
people now living here, but for the benefit of coming generations, 
we will state that no more genial man lives than Willie Pace. He 
is a lawyer of good repute, always seeking to know just what is 
the law, and have it take its course. He is true to his clients and if 
any of them have a bad case he frankly tells them so. He served 
as County Judge for several years, and gave general satisfaction. 
Recently he and Miss Dry, of DuQuoin, were united in wedlock, 
and have settled down to housekeeping in the old homestead so 
recently vacated by the death of his lamented parents. 

ALBERT WATSON, the youngest of three sons bom to Joel 
F. and Sarah (Taylor) Watson, was born in Mount Vernon, April 
15, 1857, attended Mount Vernon schools and finished up at Mc- 
Kendree College. He taught school two years, then began reading 
law under C. H. Patton, was married to Mary E. Way. He was 
admitted to the bar in 1880 and it is now admitted by all that he 
is a good, safe lawyer. He is also president of the Ham National 
Bank of this city, the bank at Ashley, at Ina, and Ewing. 

WILLIAM H. GREEN, the son of Dr. W. Duff Green, is an- 
other Jefferson county production, a valuable citizen and one of the 
best lawyers in Southern Illinois. He is an impressive pleader, a 

114 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

close student of all the important decisions of the courts, with a 
mind judicially poised, backed up with a determination to reach 
the highest round in the ladder of professional excellence. He has 
been the choice of his own county for several years for the Circuit 
judgeship. He has served the county as State's Attorney, as repre- 
sentative in the State Assembly, and other important places with 
honor and fidelity. The most peculiar part of it is he is a bachelor. 
"A hint to the wise," etc. 

A. D. WEBB, now County Judge, is a Franklin county product, 
but a fine man and a good lawyer. He is now in the full flush of 
manhood, with ability and determination enough to keep him at the 
front for many years to come. As Judge he is proving himself 
the right man in the right place. 

C. W. HAE^ISS, a Perry county boy, son of Rev. J. Carroll 
Harriss, a war-time friend of the writer, "Clarence," as we all call 
him, is a conscientious, industrious, painstaking young man, combin- 
ing all the elements that go to make up an ideal legal light. He has a 
business partnership with Judge Webb, and is getting his share of 
the practice and has a bright future before him. He recently mar- 
ried an excellent Mount Vernon girl, the late William H. Herd- 
man's daughter, and is "one of us" for all time to come. He is de- 
veloping into an orator of considerable ability. 

WILLIAM C. BLAIR came to us as a Washington county prod- 
uct, and is gaining prominence as a criminal lawyer, but is perhaps 
a little more inclined to politics than the law. He has served in 
the capacity of State's Attorney, Master in Chancery, and has just 
been re-elected as Representative in the Legislature. Both as a 
lawyer and a politician, hunting the "deep swimming holes," he will 
no doubt succeed in "getting there." 

EUGENE PEAVLER, another home production, is one of our 
rising young men with the requisite ability and vigor, and will sue- 



ceed. He graduated at the law in one of Indiana's best law 
schools. He has just served two terms as City Attorney for Mount 
Vernon. He may not intend to get in anybody's way, but it would 
be a good idea for aspiring young fellows, like himself, to leave him 
a clear track. 

CON SCHUL is an importation, but has been forging to the 
front since he came. He is one of those self-made lawyers that 
knows no defeat, and his only danger, perhaps, comes from within. 
He is persistently for his client (as all good lawyers are) and no 
loop-hole escapes his attention. When it comes to pros and cons, 
he is always on the "Con" side. 

ROBERT CARPENTER was a student of C. H. Patton and suc- 
ceeded in getting the correct principles of the law well settled in 
his mind, but never has sought much practice, and he is advanced in 
age now, so that he will not long be seeking earthly justice, but 
justice of a higher order, and it certainly cannot be that any Jef- 
ferson county lawyer will be found on the wrong side when it comes 
to — the highest court. At least, we hope not. 

JAMES L. POLLOCK, son of the late Judge Pollock, was raised 
in our midst, married here, and is one of us. He is a good, quiet 
citizen, a good lawyer and is doing well m the practice of his pro- 
fession. He was a candidate for State's Attorney, but was dis- 
tanced in the primary. He is a better lawyer than politician. No 
doubt, he will be favorably heard from along the legal road of life. 

KIRBY SMITH, a Scion of one of the F. F. J's. (first families 
of Jefferson), is another member of our local bar, well equipped for 
unravelling the legal tangles that may occur in our county. Like the 
rest of the bar, he is comparatively a young man and has great 
possibilities ahead of him. Perhaps the law would yield more to 
him than politics, as he has just received his second defeat for State's 
Attorney, but is now ready for any legal tussle that may come along. 

1 16 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

GEORGE L. ORE, his Republican opponent, was re-elected 
State's Attorney. Ore is a Hamilton county production, but as 
the saying down there is, "he's a yallar good one." He is just enter- 
ing on another four years' term as State's Attorney, which posi- 
tion he fills to the perfect satisfaction of the people, and although the 
county is normally Democratic and he is a Republican, he has been 
elected twice in succession. 

NORMAN H. MOSS is another Jefferson county production and 
a good one at that. He has been in the practice of law several 
years, and is quite popular — a logical reasoner, a close thinker, an 
attractive speaker and wears a smile that will not come off. He 
has a bright future before him, legally speaking, if he does not fol- 
low the ignis fatuus of politics too far into the dismal swamp. He 
has been a member of the Legislature and is now serving as parole 
officer of the Southern Illinois Penitentiary. 

NORMAN A. PIERCY is another Jefferson county product, and 
interests himself both in the law and agricultural pursuits and is do- 
ing well. He is strictly conscientious in his dealings with his fellow 
men — a thing, we regret to say, cannot always be truthfully said of 

ROBERT M. FARTHING, also a native of old Jefferson county, 
ranks A No. I in the courts and on the bench. He served four 
years as County Judge. For the past two years he has held an im- 
portant legal position under the government, with headquarters in 
Ohio, but has never thought of giving up Mount Vernon as his home. 
We still claim him as "our Bob." The people will watch for his 

JOHN BAKER, Farthing's student, is also in Ohio, with him. 
Baker is a young man just entering the profession and will no doubt 
make his mark. He is also a Jefferson county product. 

One of the peculiarities in connection with our present bar is 

wall's history of JEFFEE^ON CO., ILL. 1 1 7 

the fact that they are all comparatively young men (except one) 
and nearly all Jefferson county "kids," hence our anxiety to see 
them all do well, so that the next historian may embalm them in a 
sarcophagus of good words and sweet memories. 



Its part in Black Hawk and Mexican Wars. The War for 
the Union, and the Spanish War. 

It is great to be out where the fight is strong. 
To be where the heaviest troops belong. 
And fight there for man and God. 

Every state and nearly every county in the Union has had 
military experience — that is, have furnished men and perhaps means 
for military service. So our own Jefferson county has had a part in 
all the wars that have taken place since its formation — and before. 
While the county may not have had a soldier that served in the 
Revolutionary war, it has had many descendants of such soldiers. 
But quite a number of our pioneers took part in the War of 1 8 1 2 — 
but these wars had passed into history before Jefferson county came 
upon the stage of action and our greatest interest in them is the fact 
that without them Jefferson county would never have existed; in 
fact, none of the states and counties of these glorious United States 
would have been, had it not been for these wars. The Revolution- 
ary war transferred this magnificent domain to us, and the War of 
1812 settled its ownership, perhaps for ever. The result of these 
wars was the securing to the puny Republic of thirteen feeble Amer- 
ican colonies an empire greater than that over which the Roman 
eagles soared, when it was said: "From her throne of beauty she 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 119 

ruled the world." War is calamity, nay, as General Sherman 
said, "War is hell," but without it we could never have permanently 
established this grand empire and made it free for all. 

We hardly know where to begin or what to say as regards 
Jefferson's county war record. Suffice it for the present to say 
that her sons have always been in the forefront of danger, when 
duty or patriotism demanded it, and her daughters have always been 
equally patriotic and faithful to the county in encouraging and min- 
istering to the comforts and wants of her "soldier boys." As al- 
ready stated, several of the Maxeys, Wilkies and others were in 
the War of 1812 — long before the county was formed. At the 
time of that war this part of the country was having "troubles of its 
own" with the Indians. Then the Black Hawk war sprung up in 
1 83 1 , and Jefferson county sent many of her best citizens to quell the 
disturbance. The Indians were very largely responsible for the war. 
and those who have read the Indians' characteristics can readily 
imagine what this means. Jefferson county sent a full company. 
WTiile we would be pleased to give a roster of all Jefferson county 
companies that have served in all wars, we know that time and space 
forbid ; but the patriotic example set by the few pioneers then in the 
county seems to demand that their names be handed down to pos- 
terity. Here they are: Captain — James Bowman; Lieutenants — 
F. S. Casey, Green Depriest; Sergeants — S. G. Hicks, Eli D. An- 
derson, J. R. Satterfield and Littleton Daniels; Corporals — George 
Bullock, James Bullock, Isaac Casey, Isaac Depriest; Privates — 
S. H. Anderson, G. W. Atchinson, Ignitious Atchinson, Sam- 
uel Bullock, WiUiam Bingaman, John Baugh, James Brad- 
ford, M. D. Bruce, P. C. Buffington. S. W. Carpenter. 
Zadok Casey, John Darnell, William Deweeze, Gasaway 
Elkins, Robert Elkins, Isaac Faulkinberg, W. D. Gaston, 
W. B. Holder, W. B. Hayes, James Ham, Joel Harlow, 

120 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

John Isom, John Jenkins, David Kitrell, J. C. Martin, N. Morgan, 
I. F. Miner. J. E. McBrian, H. B. Newby, J. R. Owens, Peter 
Owens, Wyatt Parish, George W. Pace, James Rhea, Jacob 
Reynolds, WilHam and Noe Thomason. They had one man killed 
and three wounded and two or three died of disease. We give 
this short roster because it comprises the best citizens of the county, 
and because these names and their descendants appear in all the 
later military lists of the county. Each man furnished his own horse 
and gun — and "waited" for his pay. But the war was soon over 
and that was the last Indian war in Illinois. 


Early in 1846 war was declared against Mexico and Illinois 
furnished four regiments. Jefferson county contributed two full 
companies. The first. Company H, was part of the third regiment. 
Col. Ferris Foreman, of Vandalia, commanding; Col. 
Stephen G. Hicks was captain and Lewis F. Casey and William 
A. Thomas (Bob's father), lieutenants. The company left Mount 
Vernon on June 1 8, 1 846, marched to Alton and from there em- 
barked to Mexico. They saw hard service, were at Vera Cruz, 
Cerro Gordo and other small battles. The action of this and other 
Ilhnois companies at Cerro Gordo caused General Twiggs, then in 
command, to exclaim: "Well, I never saw such fellows as you Illi- 
nois men are — with others, it is "go, " but with you it is "come on." 
After the capture of Jalapa, the term of Company H expired and 
the men came home in 1847. 

The second company was enrolled at Mount Vernon, June 3, 
1847, under the second call. The company had in it, also, some 
of the best men of the county and was officered by Captain James 
Bowman; Eli D. Anderson (the writer's landlord at the Mount 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 121 

Vernon Inn, to whom he was a "bound" boy) and Willis Holder, 
lieutenants. This company suffered heavily from disease, and 
among the number, Lieutenant Anderson died at Vera Cruz. The 
company went to Alton, but did not set sail for Mexico until Au- 
gust 1 3th. After reaching Mexico, they were on duty until the close 
of the war, but were not engaged in big battles as was the first com- 
pany. The company was A, of the Second Regiment, by Colonel 
Collins and S. G. Hicks, lieutenant-colonel. When this war came 
up, eight thousand Illinoisans offered themselves, but only thirty- 
eight hundred could be accepted. The fields of Beuna Vista, Vera 
Cruz and Cerro Gordo will carry the glory of our Illinois soldiers 
long after the causes that led to the war have been forgotten. We 
may state that many considered the "cause" of the war an insuffi- 
cient "excuse" for war. It brought us the great state of Texas, but 
increased our slave territory. 


But it was reserved till our day for our sons to find a field, a 
cause and a "foeman worthy of our steel" — that fully brought out 
and illustrate the true spirit of heroism in all its fullness. Illinois 
put nearly three hundred thousand gallant soldier boys in the field — 
far exceeding the number the Federal government had in all the 
wars of the Revolution, but our present duty is to confine our re- 
marks, as nearly as possible, to the soldier boys of Jefferson county. 

When the war for the preservation of the Union was forced 
upon the country, Jefferson county came to the front and did her 
whole duty in the glorious work of maintaining the Union, one and 
indivisible, and upholding the honor of the flag. True, not many 
of the original settlers went to the front, for they had finished their 
work and passed on to their reward, but their descendants were 

122 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

largely in evidence and none were more deserving of praise and 
honor. Speaking of "soldier boys," how literally true the expres- 
sion: The great war was fought and won by boys. There were 
two thousand boys in the Union army under fourteen years of age; 
eighty-six hundred under sixteen years old ; one million one hundred 
and fifty thousand under eighteen; two million one hundred and 
sixty-eight thousand under twenty-one — literally a boys' fight. No 
wonder we call them "our boys," and no wonder we are proud of 
them and their parents who taught them patriotism. May the coun- 
try ever be blessed with such parents — and such boys. Were it 
possible, we should like to individualize the service of each of our 
Jefferson county boys, but we must content ourself with saying that 
all — from general to the last private in the rear rank — proved them- 
selves brave and patriotic — entitled to the undying respect and love 
of every good citizen of our county and state. Like other counties, 
Jefferson had a few secession sympathizers who allowed their prej- 
udice against President Lincoln and his party to alienate them en- 
tirely from all feeling of loyalty and to even hate their loyal neigh- 
bors. The most peculiar phase of it was that men who had been 
driven from the South on account of slavery and had obtained free 
homes here, were apparently ready to fight for the perpetuation of 
slavery. Ex-sheriff John Bagwell organized a small company of 
these "mistaken spirits" and took them into the service of the Jeff 
Davis oligarchy. Many of them never came back — Bagwell him- 
self was killed in the battle of Shiloh. Some parties of this kind 
who remained in Jefferson county, caused more ui^easiness among 
the loyal women and children, than the "braves" who went to the 
front — on the wrong side. And even today, after the war feeling 
has entirely subsided, the boys in blue persist in saying that they have 
more respect for the boys that went and fought on the other side, 
than they had for those who were not brave enough to fight as they 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 123 

When the war became inevitable, Jefferson county was no 
laggard in taking the right side. When the stars and stripes were 
hauled down from Fort Sumpter and the rebel rag displayed in its 
place, it set our best people ablaze with patriotic zeal and many 
rushed off and joined the first squad they could find — ready to die, 
if need be, for the flag and the Union. Part of Noleman's Cavalry 
was the first organized squad to leave the county. 

THE FORTIETH REGIMENT was soon organized, principally 
from Wayne, Hamilton and Franklin counties, but with enough 
Jefferson county boys to fill some of the most important offices. 
Col. S. G. Hicks was made its colonel, John W. Baugh its ad- 
jutant, Albion F. Taylor its quartermaster, and S. H. Watson one 
of its captains, but he was soon placed on the commander's staff. 
Also several privates from the county helped the Fortieth to 
be one of the very best regiments in the service. At the battle of 
Shiloh, while leading the Fortieth in the thickest of the fight Colonel 
Hicks was wounded and fell from his horse, but he pointed for the 
regiment to sweep on and he crawled to water, half mile away, and 
washed his wounds with his own hands. After he recovered. Gen- 
eral Sherman put Colonel Hicks in command of Paducah, Ken- 
tucky. The rebel General Forrest sent in a demand for the uncon- 
ditional surrender of the place and Colonel Hicks sent him word he 
would have to "come and take it. " They came and the battle 
was fierce, while it lasted. The rebel had about twelve hundred 
killed and wounded, while Hick's force, being protected by the fort, 
lost only seventeen killed, and a number wounded. Hicks died in 
1869, Mrs. Albion Taylor being his surviving child. The Fortieth 
with forty other Illinois regiments, marched with Sherman to the sea 
and home again and made an unexcelled record for duty and 

THE FORTY-FOURTH REGIMENT contained the first full com- 
pany that marched out of Jefferson county — Company I. Jasper 

124 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

Partridge was made captain, Russell Brown and Jesse Bliss, lieu- 
tenants, with the writer as first sergeant, which was supposed to be 
in the line of promotion; but at the end of three years the above 
officers still held their commissions — a thing that did not occur with 
any other company in our knowledge. Company F, organized at 
Ashley, also contained many Jefferson county men, and these two 
companies went to Chicago and joined an organization calling itself 
the Northwestern Rifle Regiment, but which was numbered the 
Forty-fourth Illinois when finally mustered into service. This act 
almost caused a mutiny in the regiment from the fact that there were 
two full companies from Ohio and two from Michigan in the or- 
ganization. This mutiny did finally break out when at the St. Louis 
arsenal the regiment, company by company, refused to be armed 
with old wire-locked muskets, instead of rifles as we had been 
promised. The regiment was ordered locked up in the arsenal and 
after two days, the authorities, seeing that the regiment was full of 
American grit, finally issued the promised guns and the regiment 
went "flying" after "Pap" Price. We finally caught up with him 
and McCullough, VanDorn and Albert Pike, with his half-breeds 
(more than double our number) at Pea Ridge, Arkansas, fought 
the whole outfit for three days and won the most signal victory. The 
guerrillas had captured our supply trains and being too hundred 
miles from our base of supplies (there being no railroads), we 
then foraged as we went through South Missouri and Arkansas 
under General Osterhouse, and finally went to Tennessee, then to 
Mississippi, then to Cincinnati, then to Louisville, where we joined 
the army of the Cumberland and were in all the battles southward. 
In the terrible battle of Stone River, the writer was badly wounded 
and taken prisoner, taken south and enjoyed the hospitality of Con- 
federate prison fare at several points — especially at Libby in Rich- 
mond. After passing through all the battles of the Atlantic cam- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 125 

paign — Buzzard Roost, Rocky Face, Resaca, Dallas, New Hope, 
Kenesaw Mountain, Chattahoochie, Peach Tree Creek, Atlanta, 
etc., came back and participated in the battles of Nashville and 
Franklin. This reminds us that forty-four years ago this 30th of 
November, the Forty-fourth and a few other Illinois organizations 
were engaged in the sanguine battle of Franklin, which was the cul- 
mination of sixty-nine days of anxiety, both North and South. 
Buoyed by hope. Hood sacrificed Joe Johnson's veterans in useless 
assaults upon Sherman's troops before Atlanta. He fancied he 
could fall back on Sherman's line of supplies, defeat Thomas, and 
draw Sherman's army back into Middle Tennessee. But on that 
could November morning, he found the Union troops entrenched 
on Harpeth river, near Franklin, and tried to roust them from their 
breast-works, with the result that Hood's army lost seven thousand 
men and our troops suffered a loss of three thousand. The battle 
was proportionately more desperate, ferocious and destructive than 
was Gettysburg. It was, in fact, the critical battle of the war, for 
Grant had troubles of his own in Virginia, and decided victory over 
"The Rock of Chickamauga" at this time and place, would have 
recalled Sherman's army and the war "between the states" would 
have been indefinitely prolonged. It was truly a case of "when 
Americans meet Americans, then comes the tug of war." 

After the fragment of Hood's army had left Tennessee, the 
Forty-fourth went to New Orleans and to Texas, and finally got 
back to Illinois in October, 1865, having seen more than four years' 
service. A Jefferson county man, William J. Stephenson, was the 
first lieutenant colonel of the Forty-fourth and William Stephen- 
son, a lieutenant of Company F. 

THE FORTY-NINTH ILLINOIS was another regiment that had 
Jefferson county material. Company IC being made up here. B. F. 
Wood was captain, then Joseph Laur, James Lcfi^nion and John S. 

126 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

Brooks were lieutenants. Col. W. R. Morrison was colonel. He 
was wounded at Fort Donelson and saying his wound ought to send 
him to Congress, he went home, then to Congress. It was assigned 
to various commands, always doing its full duty, and being mustered 
out of the service with honor inscribed upon its banners. 

THE SIXTIETH REGIMENT contained more Jefferson county 
boys, and its second colonel was William B. Anderson, a Jefferson 
county boy. Its last colonel, George W. Evans, was a Jefferson 
county farmer and banker for many years, and a public-spirited man, 
whom Mount Vernon missed greatly when he died and was buried 
here some years ago. Three companies were composed of Jeffer- 
son county men, besides some of the other companies had some of 
our "own raising." Colonel Anderson was born in Mount Vernon 
in 1830, a son of Governor Anderson, was educated in the Mount 
Vernon schools and at McKendree College, studied law and was 
admitted, but preferred farming and did not practice. In 1856 he 
was elected to the Legislature and re-elected. He was the first to 
introduce the idea of a constitutional amendment prohibiting special 
legislation and making all laws general in their nature. He fought 
for the idea until he became a member of the constitutional conven- 
tion, and had it engrafted into that instrument. As a soldier. Col- 
onel Anderson was both noble and brilliant, and it was said by many 
that Gen. John A. Logan and Col. (after general) W. B. 
Anderson, were two of the best volunteer officers in the army. After 
the war, General Anderson was sent to Congress and served as 
Pension Agent for years. He died full of years and well-merited 
honors. He was a brave and efficient soldier. As a general he 
would have won a name and fame surpassed by none. He went 
into the army as a private and came out as a brigadier-general, but 
this promotion camr ^oo near the close of the struggle to avail him 
anything i'^ '^' .,din jf an active general. We never met a Sixtieth 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 127 

regiment member that did not almost worship "Col. Bill Ander- 
son," he was so kmd and human to his men — often letting some tired 
boy ride while he trudged along with the rank and file. He was 
a loved comrade and an ideal officer and Jefferson county may well 
be proud of the life and services of general, colonel, comrade Wil- 
liam B. Anderson. 

Col. G. W. Evans of the Sixtieth, was a brave, gallant, 
faithful soldier. He never missed a march or a battle in which the 
regiment participated. He was in all the battles to the sea and was 
at the surrender of Gen. Joe Johnson, and led his regiment in 
triumph through Richmond to Washington, where it participated in 
the Grand Review and then to Louisville, Kentucky, where they 
were mustered out. The colonel then came to Jefferson county to 
live and die. 

Company C, of the Sixtieth, had John R. Moss as captain 
first, then Capt. Simeon Walker, then Capt. Rhodam 
Allen, but he modestly declined the promotion and Frank L. Fer- 
guson was made captain. Company D, mostly from Jefferson coun- 
ty, had Alfred Davis as captain; he resigned and Luke S. Wil- 
banks was chosen; he also resigned and John B. Coleman (one of 
Mount Vernon's best citizens) was made captain. He was killed 
at the battle of Peach Tree Creek. Company G had the follow- 
ing officers from our county: Jehu J. Maxey, Cornelius N. Breeze, 
John Frizell, Asa Hawkins, J. W. Moses and John A. Johnson. 
The Sixtieth went everywhere it was ordered to go, did everything 
it was ordered to do — ate all the "hard tack and sow-belly" in sight, 
"busted" the black coffee kettle, wore out all the uniforms they had 
and came home to be good citizens and die in peace — and the most 
of them have -succeeded. 

THE EIGHTIETH REGIMENT is the next to boast of Jefferson 
county boys. Company E was a full company from the county, S. 

128 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

T. Strattan, captain; Newton C. Pace, first and C. W. Pavey, 
second lieutenant. After the battle of Perryville, Kentucky, Cap- 
tain Strattan resigned and Pace was made captain. William C. 
Maxey was first lieutenant. Lieutenant Pavey was promoted to a 
captaincy, but was on detached service when the regiment was mus- 
tered out. John R. Cunningham was made captain of Company H, 
and Robert Milburn, lieutenant. Rev. John W. Lane, of Mount 
Vernon, was the chaplain of the regiment. The Eightieth was or- 
ganized at Centralia in August, 1 862, and joined the army then or- 
ganizing at Louisville. At the battle of Perryville, which occurred 
a few days after they were mustered in, they fought like veterans, 
but lost fourteen killed and fifty-eight wounded. Lieut. N. C. 
Pace was wounded. The next battle was at Dug's Gap on Sand 
Mountain, and Lieutenant Pavey was wounded. The next May the 
regiment, while out scouting, was captured by a superior force, the 
men paroled and the officers sent to Libby prison. After the men 
were exchanged, the regiment had a varied experience — but gener- 
ally varied from bad to worse — only four of the captured officers 
ever got back to the regiment. During its term of service it traveled 
over six thousand miles and took part in over twenty battles. It was 
an ideal Illinois regiment. 

Jefferson county boys. Thomas S. Casey was its colonel ; Thomas 
H. Hobbs, its quartermaster; Dr. Hiram S. Plummer, its surgeon. 
Company B had for its officers: Charles H. Maxey, captain; Sam- 
uel T. Maxey, first lieutenant; John H. Dukes, second lieutenant; 
Charles Maxey resigned in 1 863 and S. T. succeeded him as cap- 
tain, but he was mustered out under the consolidation of the regi- 
ment. The regiment was consolidated into a battalion of four com- 
panies, and E. H. Topping made commander, Casey, Hobbs and 
Plummer being mustered out. The One Hundred Tenth saw less 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 129 

service than some other lUinois regiments, but had good material 
for good soldiers, but it is said, were not properly trained and cared 
for. The battalion did excellent service under good military rule. 
Dr. W. C. Pace as surgeon and J. P. Watson, captain, both of 
Ashley, were members of the battalion. Many Jefferson county 
men besides these, scattered in various commands, were good and 
faithful soldiers. Nearly every regiment recruited in Southern Illi- 
nois caught one or more Jefferson county boys and it is sufficient to 
say that not one of them ever disgraced themselves or the county 
they so faithfully represented. 

Many Jefferson county boys served in cavalry regiments, not- 
ably the Sixth and Thirteenth Cavalry, but we have not the record 
at hand and can only say they were brave soldiers — like the rest. 
Capt. Fred Boswell commanded a company in the Thirteenth, and 
some few were in the artillery. 

It would have been a pleasure to have been more thorough in 
giving the service of those we have mentioned and many we have 
not spoken of. The story of Jefferson county soldiers is already known 
far and wide. A perusal of the Black Hawk and Mexican wars 
and the Civil war tells the story. The hundreds of battlefields, and 
the broken ranks of the home-coming regiments attested that they 
had met brave men like themselves. And now that they have 
fought their last battle and sleep their last sleep, let us revere their 
memories, drop a tear and a posy on their sleeping dust, knowing 
that their spirits — their real selves — are basking in the sunlight of 
eternal peace and joy. 

But the noble, patriotic, loving women who suffered even more 
than the soldiers in the field, who cheered us with kind words and 
often with delicacies from their own dear hands, and who always 
held us up with their prayers — let us not forget them. While soldiers 
are receiving eulogies and encomiums of a grateful people, let not the 

130 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

blessed women of the war be forgotten. Brave, noble, generous 
loving women. Your deeds deserve to be written in letters of shin- 
ing gold. Your gentle ministrations to the unfortunate and your 
loving kindness to the poor, war-worn soldiers will never be for- 
gotten, while even one of our number survives ; and your noble, self- 
sacrificing devotion to your country will ever live bright and imper- 
ishable as the sun and as eternal as the "Words of Life." 

Jefferson county sent two companies of splendid soldier boys 
to the Spanish- American war in 1 898 — one was part of the Fourth 
and the other part of the Ninth Illinois Regiments. Each of these 
came home with the consciousness of having performed well their 
duties and having their names placed on the roll of honor. Some 
of them~we now recall Bert Reid, Arthur Easly and Bert Watson- 
were brought back as dead heroes, and, with the flag they loved 
wrapped about them, sleep the sleep that knows no waking this side 
of the "grand review" above. Although this last war was not a 
"breakfast spell" as compared with the "Great War" still these boys 
"kept the faith, fought the good fight" and henceforth there is laid 
up for them crowns of honor. The Spanish war fully demonstrated 
the fact that the North and the South are now perfectly united in up- 
holding the Union and the flag forever. The contest was brief but 
glorious. Never since old Commodore Noah landed his only boat 
in the world on Mount Ararat, with the stars and stripes proudly 
floating before her, while the band played : "God bless the whole 
'capoodle,' Hail Columbia Yankee Doodle," has there been such a 
triumphant victory on the waters of the world, as was achieved by 
Admiral Dewey and his gallant lads in Manila bay at their early 
morning May-party — when the entire Spanish fleet disappeared be- 
neath the waves. And never since Sampson of old slew his thou- 
sands of Philistines with the jaw-bone of a jack-rabbit, has there 
been a more decided "scoop" than when Admiral Sampson's fleet 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 131 

"pulled off" another world-renowned American victory, by send- 
ing the balance of the Spanish fleet to the bottom of the sea, while 
Old Glory waved over Cuba. Our American fleet is not only the 
mistress of the seas, but is the admiral of all the world, as has been 
fully demonstrated by the honors and compliments paid it in its re- 
cent visit to foreign nations, and its trip around the world — having 
returned (February 22, 1909) with not a scratch on any of the 
sixteen ships. 

"Oh, the star-spangled banner, long may it wave 
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave." 



Dating Back to the Beginning and the Schools of Today. 

"Tis education forms the common mind. 
Just as the twig is bent the tree's incHned." 

"I know not what the future hath 

Of marvel or surprise, 
Assured alone that life and death 

His mercy underlies." 

The subject of education should engross the attention of every 
good citizen of the county. It certainly does interest that part of us 
who in our "growing up" were so greatly deprived of its privileges. 
Our forefathers struck the keynote when they declared in their 
famous "Ordinance of I 787" that "knowledge with religion and 
mortality are necessary to the good government of mankind." With- 
out education there can be no free or lasting government. An igno- 
rant people can be governed, but only an intelligent, educated people 
can govern themselves ; in other words, we must educate or we will 
certainly perish, no argument is needed along this line. 

At first Congress passed an act enabling Illinois to set apart 
section 16 of each township for the use of the inhabitants of such 
township for the support of schools. The sixteenth section so do- 
nated, amounted to about a million acres for Illinois and over ten 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 133 

thousand acres for Jefferson county. Truly a princely donation for 
education in that day. But the squatters took possession of the 
school lands and wasted the timber and otherwise decreased the 
value of same and the cause of education languished, the settlements 
were sparse, money scarce, and no professional teachers. Thus 
things went on until in 1825, the Duncan school law, a good one, 
but far in advance of the population, was passed, which declared: 
"To enjoy our liberties and rights, we must understand them : It is 
a well established fact that no people ever continued long in the en- 
joyment of civil and political freedom, who were not virtuous and 
enlightened; it is, therefore, considered the peculiar duty of a free 
government like ours, to extend and encourage the improvement and 
cultivation of the intellectual energies of all." Then followed the 
law, which is really the foundation upon which our admirable free 
school system of today rests, and which is now being enforced and 
cared for by Professor Francis G. Blair, a Jefferson county boy. 
But at that time the people were not ready for it — not educated up 
to it — and after its repeal, which took place two years later, the 
cause of education languished; and for many years the school- 
houses, school books, school-teachers and manner of mstruction were 
of the most primitive character. The houses were of the proverbial 
log-cabin variety, and the books were as rude as the cabins and the 
teacher was sometimes the most primitive of all. He considered it 
his duty to impart instruction by means of a gad, just as we con- 
trolled oxen in those days. It was 

"Readin' and writin' and 'rithmetic. 
Taught to the tune of a hickory stick." 

We have before us some time-worn documents gotten up by 
Edward Maxey, who it would seem, had charge of the schools in 

134 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

this vicinity from 1825 to 1837. The documents read something 
Hke this: "I, Edward Maxey, agree to teach a school of spelling, 
writing and arithmetic, for so long, for five days each week and 
make up any lost time, according to my best skill and the scholars' 
several capacities, for four dollars for each scholar — two of which 
to be paid in money and the rest in pork or young cattle at the ex- 
piration of the term." And below were the names of nearly all the 
pioneers, signing one or more scholars, some one-half scholar, some 
one and one-half, some two and some three. And these agree- 
ments extended through several years, signed by Maxey and the 
early settlers. 

And so the work of education went on, but was not altogether 
satisfactory even to the most unlearned. But the "deestick school- 
master" was a unique character — a personage of importance. He 
was even considered a better authority on law than the Justice of 
the Peace. He ranked high in social life and was considered a kind 
of an intellectual center of the neighborhood. But his time was up 
and he passed away; he fled before the whistle of the locomotive 
and the click of the telegraph and we shall Aever see his like again. 
He lives — only in tradition. The framers of the Constitution of 
1848, said the General Assembly might provide a system of free 
schools, but is was even several years later before the convention 
which said : "The General Assembly shall provide a thorough and 
efficient system of free schools, whereby all children of the state may 
receive a good common school education," and compelling all par- 
ents, guardians, etc., to send the children under their care to the 
public schools. 


The first school ever taught in Jefferson county was in 1820, 
by Joel Pace, who was then County Clerk. It was taught in a floor- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 135 

less cabin, without ceiling or window — perhaps without shutter to 
the door. The next school was by James Douglas at Old Shiloh. 
He boarded at Zadok Casey's and it was then that the Governor got 
his education — from Douglas. That school-house burned down, 
another one built and Emory Moore taught the next school at Old 
Union; then W. L. Howell. A man named Freeman taught a 
school at Mulberry Hill in a cabin put up by Clark Casey, and thus 
the school went on and afforded the children about the only excite- 
ment they had in those days. The testament, the spelling book, the 
arithmetic and a little writing book was the course of study, and the 
schools were loud — very loud — for everyone "studied out loud, 
at one and the same time. 


The people of Mount Vernon for several years patronized 
schools in Shiloh township. In 1831 a log school-house was erected 
about wljere George Howard now lives, this side of General's 
Pavey's in the northwestern part of the city. Scholars came from the 
west as far as Bullock's Prairie. Here Mr. Tally taught the first 
school in what is now Mount Vernon; after Tally had "tally-ed" 
out, John Baugh taught here; then Abner Melcher and daughter 
Priscilla ; and then John Downer, and the house fell in. Miss Rand 
taught a school on the west side of the square. Joshua Grant, 
brother of A. M., taught in the Methodist preacher's house, stand- 
ing next to the old church on Eleventh street, and part of the time 
was occupied in keeping the snakes out of the room. 

At length the educational fever took a new phase ; it was de- 
termined to have an academy and Governor Anderson gave the site 
off of his farm, locating the new school house on Eighth street, just 
south of Jordan. In 1 839 the Legislature incorporated a board of 

136 wall's history of JEFFEEISON CO., ILL. 

trustees composed of Zadok Casey, Stinson H. Anderson, Joel 
Pace, W. S. VanCleve, E. R. Ridgway, Downing Baugh, J. W. 
Greetham and Angus M.Grant. A building committee was appointed 
and the furnishing of the materials and putting up the building was 
awarded to John H. Watson for three hundred and fifty dollars. 
John and Asa Watson and John Leonard built the house and the 
work of education seemed assured. There were two large rooms — 
one below and the other above, a stairway on the north with a small 
room for apparatus, which we understand was furnished by Gover- 
nor Casey. The first school was taught by Lewis Dwight, a Yan- 
kee school teacher and preacher. His assistant was a Miss Evans. 
While teaching, Dwight married Governor Casey's daughter, 
Mahala, and they were the parents of Judge Samuel L. Dwight, 
now of Centralia, but who received his early education in the old 
academy. Dwight soon after died, and Joel F. Watson taught the 
next term. Then came Johnson Pierson ; Dr. Beach and wife ; Wal- 
bridge and sister; W. W. Bennett; T. B. Tanner; William H. 
Green, Sr. ; John H. Pace, and last, but not least, the notorious Bob 
Ingersoll of infidel fame. These were all prominent men and good 
teachers, and the reputation of the old academy was known far and 
wide. Many of the pupils of this old Mount Vernon Academy are 
now on the other side of the divide, but some of them had risen to a 
degree of eminence before going and it is quite proper that we name 
a few, like Governor Casey's boys — Drs. Newton and John, Col- 
onel and Judge Thomas S. — all were called to fill positions of honor 
and trust; Robert F. Wingate, attorney general for Missouri; Col. 
L N. Haynie, adjutant general and colonel in the war; Lewis 
F. Casey, prominent in Illinois and Texas; Joel F. Watson, for 
many years County Clerk; James M. Pace, School Superintendent 
and first Mayor of Mount Vernon ; Dr. A. Clark Johnson, Jefferson 
county historian; Charles T. Pace, that thoroughly Christian, busi- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 137 

ness and Sunday school man; Dr. W. C. Pace, of Ashley, and 
brother, N. C, who was captain in the army and then Mayor of 
Mount Vernon for several terms; Captain and Judge Samuel L. 
Dwight, Centralia — Dr. Pace and Judge Dwight being the only 
ones of these now living ; others, whose names we do not now recall ; 
and last and least, your humble servant, the writer, who considers it 
fame and honor enough to be permitted to write even a brief account 
of this school and the men who composed it, both as teachers and 
scholars, to say nothing of the public-spirited men who instituted it. 
Inside this historic house the writer received all the schooling he ever 
had, about six months in all. Being a "roust-about and boy of all 
work" around the principal hotel of the town, he could only at- 
tend school "between times" — that was about one day in and two 
days out, and in this way learning a little and, leaving most of what 
he ought to know out, he graduated from his alma mater — the 
old Mount Vernon Academy, being "excused" whenever he was 
needed at the hotel or whenever farming time came. Still we liked 
our teachers and "our neighbor boys" who seemed to be fixtures in 
the academy and memory reverts to them very tenderly. 

Of course we cannot refer to the old building as one of old 
did when he said : 

"The same old bricks are in the wall. 

The bell swings to and fro. 
Just as it did when we were young 

Some fifty years ago," 

for the old school-house has long since disappeared. It was never 
out of debt — was attached and sold in 1 854 to Richard and Bar- 
zilla Ragan and after their death it fell into the hands of Mrs. Roh- 
rer, who built the brick house that now stands exactly where the old 

138 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

academy stood. There is nothing in sight to remind one of "school 
days" — those good, old golden rule days. 

For a while school was kept almost anywhere. A Presbyte- 
rian minister put up a house just west of Noah Johnston's and tried 
to run a private school, but one Sunday morning he went out to the 
pasture to catch his horse to ride out in the country to preach. The 
horse "felt his oats" and would not be caught and the preacher went 
to the house, got his gun and planted a load of buckshot in his hide 
for his smartness. The shot had a bad effect — on the people — and 
soon aiter, the reverend quit his school, quit preaching and moved on. 
In 1851-2, H. T. Pace built a school-house in the grove just north 
of Dr. Plummer's on Tenth street, and employed Miss Willard, 
who afterwards married Rev. John Ingersoll (Bob's father), to 
teach. Mrs. Chamberlain, Mrs. Hogue and Morton Green taught 
there afterwards. Martha and Sarah Green — the doctor's sisters — 
taught in the old Methodist church. When the Methodist church 
was built, the three rooms below were for school purposes and in 
these Rev. J. Leaton, the first station preacher, opened school in 
1854. Next year a charter was granted by the Legislature to Z. 
Casey, J. Leaton, John N. Johnson, John H. Watson, Joel F. 
Watson and Walter B. Scales, who with three others to be se- 
lected by the Southern Illinois conference were to be trustees of the 
Mount Vernon Academy (new). Prof. Leaton was principal and 
remained so for three years. After him came A. C. Hillman, John 
H. Pace and C. E. Robinson and others conducted the school until 
it quit — just like the other academy. The war came on and schools, 
like other businesses, shut up shop and studied war. 

After the war, interest revived and in 1 865 the board of trus- 
tees consisted of S. T. Stratton, Joel F. Watson, C. T. Pace, J. S. 
Bogan, W. H. Herdman, Dr. W. D. Green, James Lyon, C. D. 
Morrison and Thomas H. Hobbs. They secured the service of 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 139 

Rev. Thomas H. Herdman, of Ohio, with Miss Carrie Smith, of 
Mattoon, and started up the school again. Prof. Herdman re- 
mained four years, giving good satisfaction, being assisted by Miss 
Sellers and Miss Anna Waggoner, who was afterwards Mrs. Gus 
Strattan. In 1 866 the project of building a school-house became a 
very live question, and resulted in securing the lot where the Frank- 
lin school-house now stands and the building of a twelve thousand 
dollar school-house, having two large rooms above and two below. 
Mr. Barbour was employed to teach the school. He had an alter- 
cation with one of his scholars, got cut, and quit; E. V. Satten- 
field filled out his time, then G. W. Johnson, Ryder, Forbes, Wil- 
son, Woodward, Courtney, Frohock, Nichols, Barnhart, McCrea, 
Alvis Reubelt, VanCleve and Minor, the present superintendent. 
When the house was finished, the classes went from the church 
to it, but the basement of the Presbyterian church had been leased 
for school purposes and the classes taught there remained, but were 
finally merged into the public school. This first house was de- 
stroyed by the great cyclone that struck Mount Vernon in 1888, 
but was speedily rebuilt larger and better. After this it seemed to 
be no trouble to get favorable votes for school-houses — in fact, the 
people seem ready to endorse every proposition for the enlargement 
or betterment of our school facilities. Since the town has risen. 
Phoenix-like, from the cyclone, a large public school-house has been 
erected and added to, on the west side ; another on the south side, 
and has been voted for the northwest side, somewhere near where 
the original schools were taught by Tally and others. Nothing 
evokes as much feeling and enthusiasm as our school election, both 
as to the location of houses and selection of superintendents to run 
the schools, which shows plainly that our educational interests are 
certainly not lagging. To show that we are up to date, it is only 
necessary to state that in addition to the above, we have a Mount 

140 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

Vernon township high school, one of the most beautiful in all the 
region round about, with Prof. J. M. Dickson in charge and a corps 
of teachers that would be an honor to any first-class institution of 
learning. This school receives pupils from the eight grades of the city 
schools and from township schools as well. Nothing in the history 
of Mount Vernon and Jefferson county promises as much good for 
the city and county as does this township high school. It secures to the 
rising generation of city and county, a better and higher grade of 
education than it would be possible for the majority of them to se- 
cure without it. It is refreshing to see the young people flocking to 
the school and Jefferson county's "higher education " seems assured 
by its being operated in our midst. All honor to the people of Mount 
Vernon township who voted that this school should be. 

And then, we also have a school-house and competent teachers 
for the colored population. Altogether we have in our city schools 
an average of about twenty-four hundred. The school buildings of 
the city are all creditable structures, but will have to be enlarged to 
meet the requirements of the heavy increase in school population, the 
number of children of school age now approximating twenty-eight 
hundred, requiring the services of a superintendent, three principals 
and a corps of from twenty-five to thirty-five teachers. Our schools 
are first-class and reaching for higher standards. In addition to the 
large number of pupils in the home district, many come from other 
parts of the county to secure the advantages of the high school train- 
ing as a preparation for business or teaching. Many of our grad- 
uates now hold positions in the schools of Mount Vernon and Jef- 
ferson county, and many others are ornaments to the homes and pro- 
fessional and business circles of our own and other cities. 

In view of these facts we think we are justified in our state- 
ment that the public schools are by far the most important of Mount 
Vernon's institutions and they are entitled to the loyal and hearty 
support of every progressive citizen. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 141 

Then in the township, outside of Mount Vernon, we have 
eight other school-houses well filled with the rising generation who 
are coming on to take the places of men and women now on the 
stage of action ; all well equipped with good teachers and necessary 
school supplies. 

The entire school interests of Jefferson county are now being 
cared for by our efficient, painstaking County Superintendent of 
schools, Mr. Arthur E. Summers, who has the interest of the coun- 
ty and the schools at heart and who leaves nothing undone that he 
sees ought to be done. The county has had many good superin- 
tendents, but none more efficient and faithful than the present in- 

The following statistics will show somewhat of^ the present 
status of education in our county, which the reader can compare with 
the beginning of our school interests at his leisure : 

Number of children in county under twenty-one years. . . . 13,604 
Number of children in county between six and twenty-one 

years y,4UD 

Number of graded schools I ' 

Number of school-houses, brick, 7; frame, 135; log, 0; . . . 142 
Number of children attending school — male, 4,767; female. 

4,639; total 9.406 

Number of teachers employed — male, 87; female, 114; 

total 201 

Fund for school purposes, all sources $51,133.78 

Total expenditure for schools 90,000.00 

As supplementary to our splendid high school and our graded 
schools of the county, we have in the state some old and tried col- 
leges and universities to "finish up" the work so well begun, the uni- 

142 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

versities at Champaign and Carbondale need only to be mentioned, 
and the Northwestern at Chicago ; and then such institutions as Mc- 
Kendree at Lebanon and many Jefferson county boys have risen to 
distinction from the knowledge they gained there ; among others, the 
Illinois College, Shurtliff, Knox and even Ewing College — all im- 
portant factors in fitting young people for future usefulness and suc- 
cess in life — and all from the almost insignificant beginnings, referred 
to in the early part of this chapter. Men, boys, women and girls, 
just think of the wonderful opportunities and facilities, which you 
now enjoy for education and advancement, as compared with what 
your predecessors enjoyed. Will you not show yourselves worthy 
successors to these glorious pioneers — these "diamonds in the rough" 
Christian patriots? 



Mount Vernon, the Home of Methodism first, and then all the 
other Denominations. The groves were the first Temples. First 
Preachers — Church Progress, etc. Churches in the Township. 

"The rock of ages standeth 

In strength and beauty fair, 
All glorious and abiding. 

The eternal God is there!" 

"Our lives we cut on a curious plan. 

Shaping them as it were for man. 
But God, with better art then we. 

Shapes them for eternity." 

Any county or community that shuts its doors against encour- 
aging church or religious matters or organizations, is in just as bad a 
condition as the individual who shuts religious ideas and aspirations 
out of his or her heart. No state or county — especially in America 
— can hope to live and thrive and be great without fostering and 
encouraging religion and religious efforts — not sectarianism, not 
creeds merely, but religion itself, as taught by the Great Founder 
of the church, against which the gates of hell shall not prevail — in- 
cluding the Ten Commandments, the Sermon on the Mount, the 
Golden Rule and the Lord's Prayer. Church organizations and 

144 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

names are only valuable as a means of giving the neighborhoods 
meeting houses and a local habitation and a name. The Great 
Head of the church never once mentioned the Methodist, the Bap- 
tist, the Presbyterian, the Catholic or any other church — except the 
Church of Jesus Christ and though we may have our names on the 
books of all the churches and do not have our heart's affections cen- 
tered on the Church of the Lord Christ, we need not hope to be 
saved. No matter what church we have next door to us, or have 
our names upon its books, we must ourselves be right before God, 
or we are only as the "sounding brass and tinkling cymbals." 

Mount Vernon and vicinity was largely a Methodistic com- 
munity from the start — the Caseys, the Maxeys and Johnsons near- 
ly all being of that faith, and it was perfectly natural that that de- 
nomination should have the first societies and the first church houses. 
In 1819, Rev. Thomas Davis was sent to the Wabash and Mount 
Carmel work, and Old Union was a preaching point, and the peo- 
ple of the town used to walk out there to preaching. In 1822, 
Mount Vernon first appears upon the conference record and Samuel 
Thompson (for whom Capt. Thompson Maxey was named) was 
presiding elder and Revs. Josiah Petterson and Josiah Smith were 
sent to Wabash and Mount Vernon ; Smith and Riddle came a year 
later; William Moore, in 1824; O. Phillips part of the next year 
and John T. Johnson (Leander's father) the balance of the time; 
Thomas Files came in 1826. First we were in the Wabash and 
then in the Kaskaskia district, before there was any Mount Vernon 
district. The following preachers then followed in the order named, 
until 1 854, when Mount Vernon was made a station ; Thomas Files, 
John Fox, John H. Benson, Simeon Walker, James Walker, War- 
ren Jenkins, Joshua Barnes, William Mitchell, David Coulson, J. 
M. Massey, John Sheppard, William T. William (father of J. D. 
and W. T.), James Dickens, J. I. Richardson, Allen McCord, R. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 145 

Moffet, Arthur Bradshaw, David Blackwell, John Thatcher, I. G. 
Kimber, John H. Hill, J. A. Robinson, Thomas W. Jones and 
Norman Allyn, and James Leaton. 

In 1 834 it was decided to build a church, the first in the town, 
but Rev. John Johnson, D. Baugh and James Ross were the only 
town members. James Gray conveyed the lot, where the old church 
now stands (which is now being used as a lumber yard office; and, 
by the way, the only building of its day now standing), to John 
Johnson, Thomas M. Casey, Joel Pace, David Hobbs, Downing 
Baugh, Joseph Pace and James Ross, as trustees. This house was 
built and was added to later. Monthly preaching was inaugurated. 
The roof was of clap-boards and soon warped so as to let in the rain 
and snow. In 1840 it was fixed up^twelve feet added to its length 
and a bell presented by Governor Casey was hung in the belfry. 
This bell is now doing service at the United Brethren church in 
South Mount Vernon. Before the house was done, the old court- 
house had fallen in and the church was opened for a political dis- 
cussion between John A. McClernand and Abraham Lincoln. Mc- 
Clernand spoke till noon and the court, composed of Democrats, 
said politics must give way to court and Lincoln was denied a chance 
to speak. But Mr. Kirby had Lincoln go up to his hotel and speak 
on a dry goods box to the people. The church being the only one 
m the town, was used for many meetings besides regular services. 
But as the population increased, other Methodists came in and a bet- 
ter house was needed. A deed was obtained to what is now known 
as the Methodist property, and a large two-story house was erected 
in the center of the lot, in 1 854, at a cost of nearly five thousand dol- 
lars, and in 1881 another four thousand dollars was added in the 
way of improvements, a new steeple, new furnishings, more room, 
etc. The first year of its erection the Southern Illinois conference, 
with Bishop Ames presiding, met in it, and Mount Vernon was 


146 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO.. ILL. 

made a station, with eighty-eight members. John H. Hill was 
presiding elder and James Leaton, pastor, but as his salary was only 
about two hundred dollars, he taught school in the basement to 
"help out." The official members and class-leaders were then Za- 
dok Casey, John H. Watson, H. Davidson, Samuel Schank, Joel 
F. Watson, John N. Johnson, Charles T. Pace, Downing Baugh. 
In 1858, the charge went back to the circuit and was not again a 
station until 1865. 


In February, 1 888, this church was leveled to the ground by 
the terrible cyclone which struck and destroyed more than half of 
the town, on that fatal Sunday, February 19th. Meetings were 
then held in "McBride's Chapel," a little room on North Twelfth 
street, until the present church edifice (the largest and best in town) 
was completed. The charge now has about six hundred members. 
The station preachers have been : James Leaton, Norman Allyn, 
Ephraim Joy, T. A. Eaton, R. H. Manier, M. House, G. W. 
Hughey, J. H. Lieper, Joseph Harris, D. W. Phillips, N. Hawley, 

C. E. Cline, C. Nash, John W. Locke, W. F. Davis, J. H. Thomp- 
son, Joseph W. VanCleve, J. F. Harmon, J. W. Taylor and C. 

D. Shumard, the present efficient pastor. 

During the intervening years, the annual conferences of South- 
ern Illinois Methodists have been held in Mount Vernon, much to 
the edification of our people, whose latch-strings are always on the 
outside for religious bodies, and to the gratification of the preachers 
and lay delegations. At some of these gatherings hundreds of vis- 
itors have been entertained for a week at a time in the hospitable 
manner so characteristic of Methodistic Mount Vernon. Such 
noted ministers as Bishop Ames, Simpson, Peck, Thompson, Wal- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 147 

den, and other big preachers, and singers, and workers have been our 
guests and our entertainers. The present splendid church building 
was dedicated by Bishop Bowman in 1889 — a year after the old 
church was destroyed. In this church we have always had good 
preachers and workers, some of them extraordinarily so, but we can- 
not here individualize. Suffice is to say, that Mount Vernon is still 
the home of Methodism, and a real good home it is. The church 
is now supplied with all the necessary rooms and has a fine pipe- 
organ and a good choir, besides all the other machinery of the church 
in good working order. A commodious and comfortable parson- 
age stands on the same lot with the church edifice. 

The Methodist population became too numerous to be cared 
for by the First church and the town having meantime spread itself 
in every direction, steps were taken to build other houses of wor- 
ship and now we have three nicely furnished Methodist churches, 
one in South Mount Vernon and in East Mount Vernon and a good 
prospect of one in West Mount Vernon, all supplied with good pas- 
tors, and an aggregate membership of perhaps fifteen hundred. Then 
we also have a Free Methodist and Colored Methodist church. 


was first organized in Mount Vernon with ten members and two 
elders, in 1841, by B. F. Spillman, and the church was served by 
Ewing Blackburn, Lefler and others, and finally the members trans- 
ferred their membership to Gilead, at Rome. But the Alton Pres- 
bytery came later and organized a society composed of Warner 
and Eliza White, John S. and Louisa Bogan, George and Hannah 
Mills, John C. and Juliana Gray, Sarah A. Tanner and W. D. 
Johnson. The pastors have been: Revs. Samuel Wylie, W. H. 
Bird, H. Patrick, Chades Kenmore, R. G. Williams, John Gib- 

148 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

son, G. C. Clark, Adam C. Johnson (the Jefferson county histo- 
rian), M. M. Cooper, G. B. McComb, J. J. Graham, Eban Muse, 
E. P. Lewis, H. B. Douglass, Yates, Turner and others. 

The basement of the old Odd Fellows hall was used by them 
until 1857, when the Presbyterian church near the Louisville & 
Nashville depot was finished. At the beginning of the present cen- 
tury the Cumberland and the General Presbyterian churches were 
merged and the Mount Vernon Presbyterians united in fellowship 
and church services in their new church on North Tenth street — 
the most centrally located church in town. They now have a good 
pastor. Rev. E. B. Surface, and a large and growing membership. 
The Presbyterians have come to stay, and everybody welcomes 
them. The colored Presbyterians have a church and pastor in 
South Mount Vernon. 


The First Baptist church of Mount Vernon was organized 
in 1 868, although there were Baptists in Mount Vernon all through 
these years. The early preachers at the First church were: J. W. 
Brooks. J. S. Mahan, D. W. Morgan, M. Wilson, Sanford Gee. 
Cal Allen, Charles Davis. W. W. Hay, W. B. Vassor, and Mr. 
Midkiff, who was the pastor when the cyclone destroyed the church 
building in 1888. The present commodious church was built in 
1889 and W. P. Throgmorton installed as pastor. Following him 
came: Revs. J. D. Hooker, W. P. Hoster. J. Carroll Harriss, J. 
P. Langly, Dr. McCall, — Theile, J. A. Todd, and W. A. Dor- 
gan, present pastor. The church has been connected with the Sa- 
lem Association and of late years is doing good work, while its 
usefulness and membership is constantly on the increase. Its present 
pastor. Rev. Dorgan. from Kentucky, is one of the most eloquent 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 149 

and instructive ministers we have in this section. The Second Bap- 
tist church has been erected in South Mount Vernon and has a good 
membership and a regular pastor. Also, the Baptists have a Mission 
church in North Mount Vernon. There are also two colored Bap- 
tist churches in town and the Baptists are at the front in all the 
forward movements in moral and religious improvements. 


On South Tenth street, near the Second Methodist church, 
stands the United Brethren church, a denomination not very com- 
mon in these parts. Their creed and mode of worship is not very 
different from the Methodists — especially in the matter of revivals, 
class-meetings, etc. They have had several good pastors, whose 
names we have been unable to secure. Like all the other churches, 
they have a flourishing Sunday school and young people's meet- 
ings and like most of the others, also are always ready for union 
efforts in trying to influence the community to "join in with the 
overtures of offered mercy." 


was organized away back in the fifties when Harvey T. Pace and 
wife were its pillars. Its present edifice was built about cyclone 
times, and the organization has had many good pastors and is con- 
stantly increasing its membership and usefulness. Among its work- 
ers are some of the descendants of the oldest inhabitants, notably 
Mrs. Dr. Plummer, daughter of Uncle Harvey T. and Aunt Nancy 
Pace. Rev. Francis is now pastor. 


whose platform catches us when all the others fail, has a neat edi- 
fice, good congregation and a splendid pastor, Rev. Fosher. Its 

150 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

building stands on the corner of Jordan and Eleventh streets, where 
over fifty years ago we went "sparking" — for one night only — she 
intimated that the "other fellow" would occupy the remainder of 
the time. 


was slow to get a foothold in Mount Vernon and not until Mrs. 
Thomas S. Casey came from Springfield and joined with Mr. Ma- 
loney and others, was there any attempt to build a church. The 
present building and parsonage sprung into being through their 
efforts. In 1 872, Bishop Baltes, and vice-general Jansen, together 
with M. Wood, were appointed trustees of "St. Philip Neri's Ro- 
man Catholic church at Mount Vernon." But not until 1880 did 
they hold services in their church, near the Supreme Court house. 
The house cost about two thousand dollars and many outside citi- 
zens contributed to its erection. Several "Fathers," whose names 
we have not, have had charge of the congregation, and regular ser- 
vices are held there as a rule. 


Bishop Seymour, of Springfield, spent his last days hunting 
up the "scattered sheep" in Southern Illinois. Among other places, 
he came to Mount Vernon and organized a church in 1878, with 
the assistance of H. W. Preston, William Pilcher, H. H. Simmons, 
T. T. Wilson and others, and services were held at various places 
until finally the original Methodist church building was secured. 
After Mr. Moody, came Rev. I. N. Irvine, a man full of zeal and 
energy, serving both at Mount Vernon and McLeansboro. Fol- 
lowing Mr. Irvine, came Rev. E. B. Hoyt, whose monument stands 
in Oakwood cemetery. Since the "old church" has been absorbed 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 151 

by the lumber yard, the congregation has been worshipping in the 
old Presbyterian church. But they are building a nice church on 
Eleventh street (the very spot where the writer, fifty years ago, 
was wedded to Miss Milly Watson). The Episcopal congregation 
is not very large, but is composed of some of our very best people 
and is doing good. TTie rector. Rev. Purse, has charge of the Mc- 
Leansboro congregation also. 

East Mount Vernon for several years had a church building 
that was occupied by all comers, especially by the Southern Metho- 
dists and the Dunkards. After it disappeared, the Epworth Meth- 
odist building sprung up to fill the "long felt want" of East Mount 
Vernon, the Epworth Methodist Episcopal church. 

A "regular" Baptist church, one of the old kind, where "foot- 
washing" is part of the service, is in operation in South Mount Ver- 
non, with a regular minister. And then we have with us what some 
please to term the "Sanctified crew," claiming to be the real fol- 
lowers of John Wesley; also the Salvation Army, who sing, pray 
and preach in the streets both — evidently doing much good. Often 
we have services in the court-house by outside people, and taken 
altogether. Mount Vernon certainly keeps pace with any and all 
other towns in building churches, and in religious matters generally. 

In addition to these Mount Vernon churches there are sev- 
eral out in the township which may be briefly referred to: 

FIRST THE CAMP GROUND CHURCH. A log house at first 
and camp meetings used to be held close by. Then a better house, 
and also another later. It took in nearly all the people in the east- 
ern part of the township for many years. It, like the rest, has a 
history, but our space forbids the details of these scattered churches, 
or of the town churches either, as to that matter. The Old Camp 
Ground has been a noted preaching place for lo, these many years, 
and ministers of all creeds have labored there for the upbuilding of 
the Lord's work — saying very little about their creeds. 

152 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

AT LIBERTY. The Methodists at Liberty were organized in 
1 85 1 , by Rev. John Thatcher, who is still remembered for his pe- 
culiarities. It consisted of the Waites, Wilkersons, Hails and a few 
others. Notwithstanding many drawbacks. Liberty has always 
managed to keep up with the religious procession, for which the 
people there deserve credit. 

SALEM BAPTIST CHURCH, in the Harlow settlement, six 
miles northeast of town, was organized by James Keele, Bird War- 
ren, R. A. Grant, Robert Harlow and others, in 1856, and for 
years services were held in the Seven Mile school-house. A few 
years ago a fine large church house was erected, which is often 
filled with devout worshippers, mostly of the Baptist faith and order. 
One of the best county Sunday school conventions we ever attend-i 
ed was held in this house. 

There are a few old inhabitants who remember what big meet- 
ings we used to have at Old Union — how under the old tabernacle 
the people used to get happy in bunches and what plam, practical 
gospel was dealt out there. This point is now in another township, 
but it was then considered part and parcel of Mount Vernon and 
that is why we speak of it in this chapter. Many years ago it ceased 
to be a preaching place and since the establishment of Oakwood 
cemetery, it has largely ceased to be a burying place, until now it is 
being revived as such. 

Pleasant Grove, the home of "Uncle Tommy" Casey, was 
another church, popular with our Mount Vernon people and many 
big preachers" have held forth there. In the "city of the dead" 
there sleeps the dust of most of the old Maxeys, Caseys, Johnsons, 
Bullocks, and others who were prominent in their day. And 
about three miles east of that is Hopewell, another land mark in 
religious matters and another burying place for pioneers. All these 
places deserve more notice than we can possibly give them. But 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 153 

the projectors of these houses of worship and these cemeteries, "be- 
ing dead, yet speaketh." Let us Hsten to their words of wisdom. 
We need but go to these cemeteries to get the sequel to the 
work performed in these churches — in other words to catch the 
silent echoes from the spirit-world. In these cities of the dead re- 
pose the ashes of the noble spirits of whom we have been vvriting, 
the pioneers of Jefferson county. But we do not go there to hear 
from them, or to see them, for they are not there. No, when we 
think of our dear departed ones, we do not think of them as in the 
grave or grave-yard. We take their lifeless bodies there and bury 
them from our sight, but their real selves, never. No, no no! Our 
dear, departed life-partner is not in the "city of the dead," but in 
the city of the living God, which human eye hath not seen, nor 
ear heard ; neither hath it entered into the heart of man to conceive 
of its wondrous beauty or the everlasting joy of its inhabitants. 
Strew your flowers on the sleeping dust of your beloved ones in 
the grave, but never, never think of them being there. The casket 
is there, but the jewel is gone. 

"There is no death, these stars go down 

To rise upon a fairer shore. 
And bright in heaven's jeweled crown 

They'll shine for ever more." 

The dead body can care for itself in the city of the dead; let 
us wisely seek our friends in the "city of the living God. " 



All Her Prominent Citizens Engaged in the Work — Especi- 
ally the Women Folks — Benevolent Organizations. 

"Keeping the line of duty 

Through good and evil report. 
They shall ride the storms out safely, 

Be the passage long or short; 
For the ship that carries God's orders 

Shall anchor at last in port." 

The temperance cause engrossed the attention of our early set- 
tlers, members of all the churches and many outsiders — especially 
the female portion, which is always right on the temperance ques- 
tion. It is and always has been the opinion of the writer that the 
women ought to have a vote on the local option temperance ques- 
tion, for they are always more disturbed by the liquor traffic than 
the sterner sex can possibly be — in fact, they are the chief sufferers 
from the baneful effects of the dastardly stuff, either licensed or un- 
licensed, and they ought to have at least an equal voice with the 
distillers, brewers and saloon keepers in saying whether it shall rule 
or ruin. 

The first temperance organization in Jefferson county was the 
"Mount Vernon Temperance Society," formed in 1832, which 
showed how the early settlers felt on the subject. The first pledge 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 155 

was like this: "We, the members of this society, mutually agree to 
abstain from the use of ardent spirits, and use our influence in every 
mild and prudent way with others for the same purpose." John 
Baugh was president and Samuel Goodrich vice-president; Joel 
Pace secretary. As nearly the whole outfit was kin to many of the 
people now living we think not inappropriate to give at least some 
of their names as connected with this important subject : Abraham 
T. Casey, Samuel Cummins, William Criswell, Zadok Casey, 
Abraham Knapp, Lewis Johnson, Joseph Pace, Edward and John 
Maxey, John Milburn, James Overbay, Abe Buffington, Ed King, 
Bennett Maxey, Thomas M. Casey, Sam Goodrich, Dave Little, 
John Parker, Jonathan Wells, Rhodan Allen, John C. Casey, 
James Brown, Nathaniel Parker, Henry Goodrich, John Scott, D. 
Baugh, Elihu Maxey, Lloyd Buffington, William Maxey, S. W. 
Carpenter, Goodman Elkins, J. G. D., W. M. A., H. B. and 
Eddy Maxey, Green Wells, Azariah Bruce, W. F. Johnson. Reu- 
ben Crosno, John and Russell Tyler, Jarvis Pierce, John M. Pace, 
Ransom Moss, William Bangamon, E. H. Ridgway, Joel Harlow, 
Green Depriest, William Hicks, Gasaway Elkins, Robert Year- 
wood, H. T. Pace and, in fact, nearly the whole male population 
of the county. Besides, here is the first place since the organiza- 
tion of the county where women were permitted to assert them- 
selves, and as the list comprises the mothers and grandmothers of 
our present generation, we cannot refrain from giving it : 

mother's list. 

Polly Baugh, Margaret Jane and Susan Buffington, Ann, 
Martha, Margaret and Caroline Anderson, Parmelia Pace, Sof- 
ronia Scott, Jerusha Wells, Kesiah, Sarah and Cynthia Scott, May 
Knapp, Rebecca Wilkerson, May Atwood, Phoebe Pace, Patsy 

156 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

Maranda, Calender, Elgeilina, Armilda and Mary Goodrich, 
Milly Baugh, Mary Pace, Sarah Tyler, Hannah Taylor, Sarah 
Maxwell, Delia Hunt, Polly Maxey, Vylinda and EHzabeth 
Casey, Harriet Casey, Rhoda Overbay, Catherine Tyler, Patsy 
Bruce, Lucinda Allen, Polly and Rachael Crosno, Millie Carpenter, 
Patsy, Emily, Elizabeth, Johnson, Clarissa Johnson, Elizabeth 
Wells, Lucinda Overbay, Elizabeth Baugh, Sarah Maxey, Emily 
Baugh, Nancy Pace. Quite a number of other "dear mothers and 
sisters" signed the pledge later at a meeting, which was addressed 
by Zadok Casey. Rev. John Johnson came in 1834 and took an 
active part in the temperance work. Elder VanCleve came in and 
helped. This society kept up till 1840, when another, engineered 
by Judge Scates, H. T. Pace, James Kirby and others and Wil- 
liam J. Stephenson, John Johnson, James Kirby, Joel F. Watson, 
J. R. Satterfield were moving spirits in it. They imported many 
good speakers like Johnson Pierson, S. D. Marshall, John Moore, 
S. S. Hayes, John Dougherty, Dr. Roe, R. F. Wingate and others, 
who helped boom the cause. This society took charge of the 4th 
of July celebration, 1843, and James M. Pace, Wesley Johnson, 
C. T. Pace and Thomas S. Casey, all students at the old Mount 
Vernon Academy, were the orators~they believed in "home talent" 
in those days. In 1855, through the influence of Judge Scates and 
James Leaton, a division of the Sons of Temperance and also a 
Lodge of Cadets of Temperance were organized. We remember 
taking the Cadets' pledge, which made us abstain both from the use 
of whiskey and tobacco, and it is one of the most pleasant reflect- 
ions of our later life that we have kept the pledge. After while the 
Sons of Temperance was merged into the order of Good Templars, 
but a division arose, a new division of the Sons of Temperance was 
started and the result was both orders suffered. The next temper- 
ance revival was in 1878-9. Colonel Campbell, Rev. G. W. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 157 

Hughey and Miss Frances E. Willard elocuted and nearly every- 
body donned the blue ribbon — and went temperate whether they 
quit drinking or not. At this time the Ladies' Christian Temper- 
ance Union was formed by Miss Willard and Mrs. Anderson (the 
same organization which is at the front yet). The first president 
was Mrs. Sarah A. Gray; vice-president, Mrs. Sue Pace, and Mrs. 
Louisa Bogan, secretary, Mrs. Mary S. Pace; treasurer, Mrs. Mar- 
garet A. Johnson. This organization takes more of the form of an 
educational institution and is still vigorously at work, being the very 
best backing the temperance cause has in all the land. They dis- 
tribute temperance documents, hold jubilees and are granted space 
in their county papers to give something sound and sensible each 
week for the cause. The little white ribbon we see on so many of 
the real temperance people — the fair sex — tells us who are the 
workers in the Women's Christian Temperance Union. Although 
denied the privilege of voting, still they are a potent force in the 
great cause, and in the final triumph, when temperance everywhere 
prevails, it will be truthfully said of these noble women, "they did 
what they could," and that is all that even an angel can do. As 
a still further tribute to the ladies we may mention that when the 
city fathers agreed to license saloons for one thousand dollars cash, 
if the majority of all persons of twenty-one years said so, the women 
voted and said "no," by a vote of five hundred and thirty and they 
were rewarded by ten years' temperance rule in Mount Vernon, at 
the end of which time, by the aid of St. Louis, Belleville and East 
Mount Vernon, the whiskey element prevailed and elected a Mayor 
and whiskey council. It is due to our people to say that only about 
ten per cent, of the whiskey vote at this election were actual resi- 
dents of Mount Vernon, who had at heart the real welfare of the 
town. Nine-tenths of the real citizens were anti-license and seeing 
the increase of drunkenness after the election, made them more so. 

158 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL, 

The "whiskeyites" of Mount Vernon, finding themselves 
balked in the license business, set themselves to work to incorporate 
the village of East Mount Vernon, so as to put up licensed saloons 
there. Of course there was no thought of the advantages of better 
government on the part of those who had charge of the new village, 
and it would have been a part of Mount Vernon in a short time, 
anyway. The petition was signed by thirty persons. The village 
was eighty rods wide by a mile long, skirting the eastern limits of 
the city and most of the inhabitants were known to be license peo- 
ple. An election was ordered and resulted in twenty-six votes for 
village organization to one against. But it was evident that the 
whole proceedings were illegal, but a board of trustees were chosen 
and thirty ordinances were adopted. But the saloons produced 
their legitimate fruit — the order in the village grew from bad to 
worse until the good people would stand it no longer and they went 
into court to show up the illegality of the whole thing. At the 
December term of court, a judgment of ouster was obtained and an 
appeal granted. The grounds for ouster were that the village never 
had the three hundred inhabitants required by law and the whole 
thing finally fell through. But the fall of East Mount Vernon 
brought all the whiskey forces to our next city election and helped 
carry their ticket through. There never was a time when the major- 
ity of the real citizens of Mount Vernon were not opposed to the 
traffic, but solely for financial reasons, a few church members al- 
ways favored the license, in one way or another and even when the 
vote was squarely against them, the "whiskeyites," who were harm- 
less as doves and wise as serpents, were ready with some scheme 
to license the curse, or if that failed, would institute "blind tigers" 
and openly violate the law in order to bring no-license into disre- 
pute. We have in mind now where a mayor promised a mass meet- 
ing of citizens that he would, if elected, do whatever the voters told 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 159 

him to do in the hcense question. They told him "no hcense" by 
a decisive vote, but he gave the casting vote for hcense within a 
month after. Also, where a City Attorney took pay from the city 
to draft a local option ordinance and in court a few weeks later, as 
the attorney for the whiskey vendor, pleaded that the ordinance 
was not worth the paper on which it was written- — all in the interest 
of the license business, plainly showing that the traffic has no regard 
for either promises or law — except to evade or stultify it. So mat- 
ters went on, sometimes with license and sometimes with blind tigers 
— until four years ago, the present Mayor, William B. Williams, 
came into office and announced that according to the vote of the 
people. Mount Vernon would have neither license nor blind tigers, 
and he, together with officers like himself, have carried out the ex- 
pressed wish of the people, as nearly as possible — at least ninety 
per cent, closer than any previous admmistration. All this plainly 
showed that officers fail only because they were afraid of offending 
some customer, or losing some votes should they happen to run for 
office — or it may be, some were weak-kneed on general principles. 
These men are generally the ones who boast that they can drink or 
let it alone, but seldom let it alone when it is on tap. They seem 
to forget that the strong-minded man is the one that lets it severely 

The contest between the temperance folks and the liquor traffic 
in Mount Vernon has been duplicated in the other towns of the 
county, and the same methods used to override the voice of the peo- 
ple — just as everywhere else; and what we say of Mount Vernon 
will apply with about equal force to Dix, Woodlawn, Walton- 
ville, Ina, Bonnie, Belle Rive, Opdyke and Bluford. 

For four years Jefferson county has been without saloons and 
find it is better for all parties that it remain so. And it will remain 
so, if we do all the good we can, in all the ways we can, and to all 
the people we can, and 

160 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

"So live that when thy summons comes to join 
The innumerable caravan, that moves 
To the pale realms of shade, where each shall take 
His chamber in the silent halls of death. 
Thou go not, like the quarry slave at night 
Scourged to his dungeon; but sustained and soothed 
By an unfaltering trust, approach thy grave. 
Like one who wraps the drapery of his couch 
About him, and lies down to pleasant dreams." 


When the curtains of the night are pinned back by the stars 
and the beautiful moon leaps to the sky, we find that we have be- 
nevolent orders and lodges galore, not only in Mount Vernon, but 
in Woodlawn, Dix, Belle Rive, Opdyke, Ina, Bonnie, Walton- 
ville — in fact, it almost looks like we were lodge-ridden. Mount 
Vernon Lodge, No. 3 1 , Free and Accepted Masons, was organ- 
ized here in 1845, and among the charter members were: W. A. 
Thomas, W. W. Bennett and W. H. Short, who were the first 
officers. This order has steadily held its own during all these years. 
Its hall is now over the opera house, in connection with the Knights 
of Pythias, Hubbard Chapter, No. 1 60, which is also in a flourish- 
ing condition, also a chapter of the Eastern Star. 

Marion Lodge, No. 13, Independent Order of Odd Fellows, 
was organized in the same year, 1845. Its charter members were: 
John W. Greetham, James B. Tolle, Thomas Metzler. William 
White, Henry Wood, W. Duff. Green came the next year and gave 
the order a boost. Dr. Green was a good Odd Fellow, but a more 
faithful worker in the ranks than James B. Tolle never rode the 
goat. Dr. Green rose to be presiding officer of the state and was 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 161 

often a delegate to the Grand Lodge. Herdman, Gibson, Baltzel 
and others soon came and Marion Lodge today remembers them all 
as faithful members and consistent workers. Jefferson Encamp- 
ment had such workers as J. K. Albright, R. L. Stratton, J. S. 
Bogan, Dr. Welborn, T. H. McBride. J. B. Tolle. W. D. Green. 
Marion Lodge has a splendid membership and now owns the build- 
ing in which it meets and in which the Ham National Bank is 

The Knights of Honor Lodge, No. 683, and the Grand Army 
of the Republic Post, No. 508, meet in their hall in the Gibson 
building. North Ninth street. The insurance feature keeps the 
Knights of Honor together. The Grand Army of the Republic, 
unlike other orders, has no field to recruit from — ^being composed 
only of soldiers of the great Civil war, and as a consequence, its 
ranks are continually thinning and soon the last roll-call will be 
sounded and the last veteran mustered out. But a few years ago, 
there were five posts in the county — at Mount Vernon, Dix, Wal- 
tonvillle, Woodlawn and Belle Rive. Now, the one at the county 
seat is the only one left and there are many vacant chairs at its 
monthly meetings. 

Then we have the Knights of Pythias, a fine lodge of young 
men, with the Uniform Rank attached; the Modern Woodmen, 
another splendid lodge, carrying the insurance feature, and a large 
membership; the Ben Hurs; the Red Men; the Elks, the Eagles 
and almost anything else you can call for — besides several, the Iron 
Hall, Mutual Aid, Ancient Order of United Workmen, Knights 
and Ladies of Security, Evening Star, Brotherhood of Locomotive 
Engineers and Firemen and others who have long since brought up 
their "unfinished business" and closed their books. 

The world of mankind is continually seeking after brother- 
hood, and as long as the church thinks more of creeds and sects than 


162 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

it does of the Fatherhood of God and the Brotherhood of Man, 
brotherhood orders will continue to come and go and try to fill the 
"long felt want." If we, as church members, would write our 
names in kindness, love and mercy on the hearts of those who come 
in contact with us, we would not so soon be forgotten, and men 
would not be seeking brotherhood in the dingy, blind-folded lodge 
rooms. Good deeds shine as brightly on earth as the stars in 

"Be kind! Be kind! The days are speeding fast; 

The time for kindly deeds will soon be past. 

Speak only words thou wilt should be thy last. 

For we know that love is never wasted. 

Nor truth, nor the breath of a prayer; 

And the thought that goes forth as a blessing 

Must live, as a joy in the air.'" 



Mount Vernon a Veritable Newspaper Grave Yard. The 
Many Changes that have Taken Place — Steady Decay of Long 
Felt Wants — Lots of Fun, but not Much Funds., 

"For life IS the mirror of king and slave; 

'Tis just what you are and do ; 
Then give to the world the best you have. 

And the best will come back to you." 

Print brothers, print with "caire," 
Print the sayings of ye "editaire;" 
Print em bright and print 'em strong; 
Commend the right, condemn the wrong. 

A county without a newspaper to conserve its interest can 
never amount to much. Like many other county seats. Mount 
Vernon has been a veritable grave yard for newspaper enterprises. 
And those of us who have from time to time attempted to hold up 
the "art preservative" have fared much the same in our efforts. We 
have had so many failures — dismal and otherwise — that it is diffi- 
cult to prepare a full and connected history of Jefferson county's 
newspaper enterprises, but here goes: 

FIRST PAPER, 1 85 1 . 

T. B. Tanner having learned from Governor Casey that John 
S. Bogan, who came to the county in 1846, and went to farming 

164 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

in Grand Prairie, was an old editor and printer, having published 
papers in Virginia and having learned the trade in the Globe office 
at Washington City — went out to his farm and camped with him 
for a few days to talk newspaper for Mount Vernon. To talk 
newspaper to a retired newspaper man is to simply arouse his desire 
to "resume" and so it proved in Bogan's case — the paper was de- 
cided upon. A subscription was taken up and one hundred and 
fifty-six dollars raised — not enough. Harvey Pace asked "how 
much more was needed?" "Two hundred dollars" was the an- 
swer. He loaned them that sum, taking notes due in two years. 
Bogan found a printer at Belleville, A. A. Stickney by name, made 
him a partner and the two came to Mount Vernon to "do and to 
dare." An old mahogany-framed press — called the Rammage — 
was secured at Belleville or Alton, and about a good shirt-tail full 
of type and a few cases and stands were purchased and the enter- 
prise launched in the room over Joel F. Watson's store, which stood 
next to what is now Buckham's drug store. In August, 1 85 1 , the 
first number of the "Jeffersonian" greeted the admiring eyes of the 
citizens of Mount Vernon and Jefferson county. It was "pulled 
off" by Stickney — each page requiring a pull — while the editor of 
this book "played the devil" by inking each page with a hand roller 
before it was printed. "The Jeffersonian" was a neat, six-column 
folio with some advertisements and mostly foreign reading matter. 
It was "helped out" a little by receiving the "official printing" from 
Hamilton county — there being no paper there, and the only one 
near us was Goesman's Benton Standard, which was started in 
1849. After "pulhng off" two or three issues, Stickney became 
tired and went over to Fairfield and started a paper. He afterwards 
went south and finally to Alaska, where he is — or was — publish- 
ing a little emigrant paper. 

After Stickney left, tramp printers, like Matchet, Wallace, 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 165 

and others, came along and helped Bogan and with the aid of local 
talent, like Manly, Wall, Satterneld, and others, the paper con- 
tinued to come out weekly, but proved too weakly financially and 
soon Bogan, paper and farm all went under together, simply be- 
cause "Uncle Johnny" was determined to pay his debts. Tanner, 
who was at this time Circuit Clerk, reproached himself as the cause 
of Bogan's misfortune, resigned his office and had Downing Baugh, 
who was then judge, appoint Bogan to the place. And from this 
appointment and subsequent elections, Bogan served in the Circuit 
Clerk's office for upwards of thirty years. He sold the printing office 
to a couple of youngsters from St. Louis — Bowman and Robinson 
— for three hundred and twenty-five dollars in gold. They came, 
expecting to "run" the town, but soon they ran home, leaving the 
office in the hands of Dodds, Johnson & Co., who bought it from 
them. The new company was composed of William Dodds, J. N. 
Johnson, Z. Casey, W. B. Scates, T. B. Tanner, Anderson & 
Mills, J. Pace & Son, with a view of advocating the building of a 
railroad with the proceeds of nineteen thousand acres of swamp 
lands which belonged to the county. This was in April, 1855. The 
paper was revived. Tanner became editor, with Lute B. Smith, an 
ordinary printer, as foreman; he had as aides, John A. Wall, T. 
T. Wilson and others. Tanner got St. Louis ads and run the sub- 
scription up to one thousand. He bought a new press and made things 
hum. After having "things go his way" on the railroad question. 
Tanner stepped down and out, but at the solicitation of Tom Casey 
and Bill Anderson, who formed a "spike team" and announced 
themselves editors of the Sentinel, as successor of the Jeffersonian. 
Before the year was out, the "big editorial" trio found out they 
could not write — at least did not write — so the office boys could 
read it; so they stepped out and the office boys. Wall and Baugh, 
stepped in and finished the year. 

166 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 


The company then leased the plant to William B. Hollings- 
worth and John A. Wall. They published the Egyptian Torch- 
light under the firm name of Hollingsworth & Wall. In the fall 
of 1857, Wall withdrew and spent the winter in Murfreesboro, 
Tennessee, and Hollingsworth soon quit and went to Arkansas. Ed 
Satterfield ran the paper a few weeks, adding the ambiguous mot- 
to: "Egyptian darkness and Jackson Democracy — one and insep- 
arable." Then Dr. S. Turner Brown took the paper and ran it a 
few weeks, when he married a visiting young lady and ran away 
to parts unknown. Ed Satterfield then came back and ran the 
paper till the tax-list was ripe — Judge Satterfield having bought it. 
After the tax-list, the office was sold to Curtis & Lane, two young 
teachers from Michigan. They moved the office to the second story 
of the Johnson house, and induced Wall to come back and take the 
formanship while they edited. At the end of the year they left, 
but leased the office to Wall, who moved it to the lower rooms of 
the old Odd Fellows hall, where he ran it till Satterfield closed the 
mortgage he held against Curtis & Lane and took the office to the 
court-house to run it as part of the county court of which he was 
the head, with his sons, Ed and John in command. Finally, in 1865, 
the plant was sold to C. L. Hayes, who started the Mount Vernon 
Free Press and the "old thing" was finally burned in the Pheonix 
block fire of 1869. 


Wall, feeling that he had not been fairly treated in the trade, 
joined with Alex Russell in the purchase of the Modern Pharos 
office at Centralia, moved it here and began the publication of the 
Mount Vernon Guardian on the south side of the square. It was 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 167 

an independent sheet, with probably RepubHcan leanings, and 
turned out to be a staunch supporter of the War for the Union. 
When the war broke out. Wall dropped the pencil, paste-pot and 
"shooting stick" and, as he believed, went to shooting in the right 
direction. The fact that he came back shot through the shoulder 
made no change in his opinion. He secured possession of the old 
Guardian office and started the Unconditional Unionist and shot at 
everything that opposed the flag and the Union. His paper was 
of such a character that he had over fifteen hundred subscribers 
among the boys at the front, who not only wanted to hear from 
home, but wanted to know what Wall was saying to the "fire in 
the rear" fellows. This list was largely increased when in 1864 
they learned that their old comrade had been way-laid at night by 
three of these fellows who attempted to assassinate him simply be- 
cause he would not refrain from publishing his Union sentiments. 
After the war was fully over. Wall went to Salem and took charge 
of the Republican there. Jack Alden succeeded Wall here; then 
Henry Hitchcock came and took the office and started the States- 
man, which lasted but a short time. 

After his burn out, Hayes resumed the publication of the Free 
Press, but sold out to Bob Wilbanks and George Haynes. who 
let William Mantz have it a while; then Don Davison got it and 
ran it as a Greenback paper. In 1 876 a Greenback Printing Com- 
pany was organized and William B. Anderson became editor of 
the Free Press, and fired many hot shots at the old parties. 


In 1871 the Tromly boys started the News, ran it five years 
as a Republican paper and sold it to C. L. Hayes; Hayes sold it 
to C. A. Keller and Keller to H. H. Simmons. In 1880, Simmons 

168 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

bought the Free Press — thus combining the News and the Free 
Press in one and making the News the only really financially suc- 
cessful paper thus far published in the county. 


Hayes and Bob Morrison got hold of the Statesman office, 
calling it Sucker State, made it Democratic, but later ran it ashore 
and quit. 


Another Hitchcock, Edward, moved his Clark county Ex- 
ponent here in 1878 and made a fair success of it as a Republican 
paper until 1884, when he sold out to Morris Emmerson, who 
changed the name to Mount Vernon Register. Emmerson put it 
on a paying basis and sold to the present proprietor, M. J. Seed, 
who is fairly making it hum, both as a weekly and a daily. The 
Register is good property, ably edited and is a credit to the city 
and county. Mr. Seed is a native of Southern Illinois, a young 
man of sterling worth, a graduate of the Northwestern University, 
and stands high (six and one-half feet) in every good word and 
work. His full name is Morris Joy Seed — the Joy being in 
honor of Rev. E. Joy, who used to preach in the Methodist church 
here and who was a relative of the Seed family. Mr. T. H. Seed, 
father of M. J., is also connected with the Register. He is an old 
newspaper man, a veteran soldier and a Christian. The Seeds' 
are in the paper business both for revenue and for the cause of 
truth and morality. W. B. Goodrich is the local editor. 

H. H. Simmons made the News a reliable, good paper and 
was making some money with it, but age creeping on, he sold to 
Grear & Baker, in 1887, who made a fair run of the paper until 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 169 

1892. R. F. Pace bought Grear's interest and the firm was Pace 
& Baker. Pace found out that running a newspaper was not all 
"fun" and in 1895 sold his interest to William T. Summer and 
Summer and Baker distilled Democratic enthusiasm for the 
Jeffersonians until Summer's health failed and he left for the 
port of editorial bliss "over the divide." Under Summer the News 
was successful and spicy. 


Was established by J. F. Bogan in 1894, but after running 
it awhile he sold to C. F. Ellis, and he to J. V. Baugh & Son, by 
whom it was published two years and consolidated with the News. 
The News is now run by a syndicate, with J. J. Baker as business 
manager, Joe VanCleve Baugh, editor, and Joe. E. Pace, as lo- 
calizer — putting out both daily and weekly editions, and is good 
paying property. The News has maintained its name longer than 
any other Mount Vernon paper, but it has had various other 
changes — including a change in politics. Mr. Simmons remained 
in the News office until recently as a typo. If the simple "passing 
away" of a friend appals us, we certamly have reason to feel sad at 
the departure of so many dear friends since we began writing this brief 
history of Jefferson county. Many of the friends of our early days, 
have, in a few brief moments "wrapped the drapery of their couches 
about them and laid down to pleasant dreams." Among the last to 
go was that veteran newspaper man, so long connected with the 
Mount Vernon News and other papers, who left for the "golden 
shore" this winter, aged eighty-one years. The writer used to work 
for him, and it was his habit to pay off his help Saturday morning, 
so, as he said, the boys could pay their debts early. He had us set 
up an obituary one day and all it said was: "He was a good man." 

170 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

Brother Simmons said that was the best obituary a man could have. 
Such being true we write his obituary in his own words — "He was 
a good man" — enough. 

We have before us an illustrated edition of the Register pub- 
Hshed in 1893. and also one of the News, 1904. They are both 
gems in the line of the printatorial art — a credit to the two offices 
and their managers. 

The Journal was published for a while by A. S. Phillips as a 
weekly, later by Pavey & Phillips as a daily, but soon failed for 
lack of patronage. 

A few years ago the Mount Vernon Times was established by 
the Times Printing Company, with B. C. Wells as editor. It was 
established as a weekly. Later a daily edition was issued for a 
time, but proved unremunerative and was suspended. The plant 
was purchased by W. E. Roberts, of Coffeen. It passed into the 
hands of Ralph Jackson, who taught school and published a Re- 
publican paper for a while. The office was finally sold and went 
to Dahlgren. 


A Farmers* Mutual Benefit Association paper, with John P. 
Steele as manager, was published here for several years, and at- 
tained an immense circulation throughout this and adjoining states. 
Its circulation ran up to many thousands, it cut a broad swath, but 
finished its course and has taken its place in the Mount Vernon 
newspaper graveyard, where — peace to its ashes — as well as to the 
ashes of the various other sheets that were also "unfortunate, rashly 

It would be a great pleasure for the writer to swing back into 
the editorial harness here in Mount Vernon were it not for a few 
facts — two of which are he is simply a back-number and as poor as 
Job's turkey. This field is a promising one for an editor who 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 171 

"claims the right of thought and what he thinks asserts," one who 
thoroughly believes that — 

"Truth crushed to earth will rise again. 
The eternal years of God are hers; 
While error wounded writhes in pain 
And dies amid her worshippers." 



Politics is Said to be the Science of Government, but too often 
it Proves to be the Science of Graft — For this Latter Kind the 
People Have no use, While for the Former Kind They Have the 
Greatest Respect. 

"Whoso reforms himself reforms the vs^orld 

WTien he has conquered his own kingdom, then, 

With flaming banners to the winds unfurled. 

He marches forth with power and conquers men." 

Jefferson county was settled largely by people from the South- 
ern slave states, and of course they brought with them their early 
conceived ideas of politics; for in those days politics were largely 
hereditary, or of the home-made order, but still of a very definite 
and ardent brand. Some of them came to get away from slavery 
and secure free homes, while others came to get free homes and 
still contend and vote for slavery — the very thing that prevented 
them from obtaining free homes in the South. Both factions con- 
tinued to revere the names of their demi-gods, Jefferson and Jack- 
son, and endorse anything that had their names branded upon it. 
But while this was true of those calling themselves Democrats, there 
was a goodly minority of pioneers scattered over the county that 
were to a certain extent worshipers of Adams, Clay and Webster. 
At the first there was very little party strife. The first general 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 173 

election that caused even a ripple in the county was the presidential 
election of 1828, which was attended with considerable feeling. 
At this election the candidates were General Jackson, with his vic- 
tory at New Orleans fresh in the minds of the people, Henry Clay, 
the sage of Kentucky, John Quincy Adams, a born statesman, and 
William Crawford, of Georgia. Jackson, of course, led in this 
county, but neither of the candidates had a majority of the elect- 
oral votes. Jackson led, Adams second, Crawford third, with Clay 
the hindmost; he was dropped in the contest and the vote of Ken- 
tucky went to Adams, electing him, and when Clay was placed at 
the head of the State Department, the Jackson men were not slow 
to charge that it was a clear case of "bargain and sale" and this 
event was used in Jackson's favor in the canvass of 1828 and con- 
tributed largely to his success and the defeat of Adams for re-elec- 
tion at that time. At this election, however, the parties were only 
known as Jackson and anti-Jackson. Leaving Jackson in charge of 
the government, we will come down to state and county politics. 
There were two gubernatorial tickets in the field — both Jack- 
sonian, but what would be called today. Stalwarts and Half- 
Breeds. Mr. Kinney was the Stalwart candidate for Governor, 
with Zadok Casey as a running-mate; John Reynolds was the Half- 
Breed candidate and R. B. Slocum, of Wayne county, was on the 
same ticket for Lieutenant-Governor. The peculiar result was that 
Reynolds and Casey were elected — Casey showing his wonderful 
popularity — he being the only Stalwart candidate chosen at that 
election. With but few changes in policy, the Jackson and anti- 
Jackson factions soon after became what was known as the Whig 
and Democratic parties, and for many years there were sharp con- 
tests between them as to which should run the government. Jack- 
son was elected President and served out his eight years and suc- 
ceeded in getting Martin VanBuren in as his successor, but failed 

174 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

when it came to his re-election, and the Whigs elected General 
William Henry Harrison, who died soon after his inauguration, and 
John Tyler, a "Mugwump," filled out the term, proving himself 
anything but a good Whig — the party that elected him. Then 
came Henry Clay to make the fight of his life and was defeated by 
Polk. Four years later the Whigs again succeeded in electing their 
man — General Scott, but he died in office as did General Harri- 
son, and Millard Fillmore, the Vice-President, filled out the term. 
He afterwards run as the American, or "Know Nothing," can- 
didate for President. The Whig party then merged itself into the 
Republican party of today, while the organization that called itself 
the Jacksonian Democratic party has survived the intervening 
years without change of name, but not without change of policy, 
for at one time and another its political coat has assumed all the 
hues of the historical garment of Joseph of old — and then some. 
Coming down to the county, we may say that it has been under 
the control of this Democratic party with little or weak opposition, 
so weak, in fact, that the old party had clear sailing up to the elec- 
tion of Abraham Lincoln as President and the breaking out of the 
war for the destruction of the government, when new lines began to 
form and the young men of the county came to the front and ar- 
rayed themselves on the side of freedom and the perpetuation of 
the Union and the maintainance of the flag — as against State's 
Rights, Slavery and Disunion. The result was that in a few years 
Jefferson county became free territory — that is, as to political think- 
ing and voting — until now, instead of the interests of the county 
being entirely in the hands of one party, there is scarcely an elec- 
tion when the responsibilities are not divided, as between the par- 
ties — a safe condition ; especially in view of what has taken place in 
other years. In the very early days, the county was chiefly con- 
trolled by two prominent men and their followers. We refer to 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 175 

Gov. Zadok Casey and Gov. S. H. Anderson. We have 
elsewhere given a brief synopsis of their characters, Hves and ser- 
vices in connection with the formation and progress of the county 
and the county seat, because their efforts for the material and po- 
Htical elevation of Old Jefferson were so closely blended that we 
could not well separate them, and we preferred to class them as 
real citizens, rather than as politicians. The same may be said of 
Joel Pace, Noah Johnston, and others, whose lives and services have 
already been referred to. As had already been said, these highly 
valued citizens were all Democrats, Jefferson or Jackson followers, 
and in their day and generation were undisputed controllers of the 
political sentiments of the county, but they were honest, faithful 
men, without guile and were always actuated by patriotic motives 
and hence were good, safe leaders. In a political way, they had as 
their allies such well known men as some of the Maxeys, Caseys, 
Johnsons, and especially and officially, such hold-overs as Dock 
Adams, F. S. Casey, William Dodds, J. R. Satterfield and others, 
who seemed to have a life-lease on the county offices. But the 
truth of history leads us to say that these were all good citizens and 
faithful officers. It is nothing against their honesty to say that they 
were allowed by law an indefinite amount of fees and emoluments 
(which evidently made them cling to the offices) that are not al- 
lowed to county or other officials today. 

Our first dim recollection of politics dates even as far back as 
the Hard Cider, or Harrison, campaign when they hauled cabins 
around containing barrels of hard cider. But more vivid is the re- 
membrance of the red-hot campaign of 1844. We well remember 
the enthusiasm, the big meetings, the flags and the songs, or rather 
jingles they got off on each other; one ran like this: 

"Hurrah, hurrah, the river's rising, 

To drown old Clay and Frelinghuyson." 

176 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

In those days it was the custom of the parties to raise long poles 
in the public square and float from the tops of them ftags and 
streamers with their candidates' names, and the main thing was to 
get the highest pole. The flags were drawn to the tops of the poles 
by pulleys and ropes. The Polk men hauled in a long hickory tree 
and erected it at the northeast corner of the square and threw their 
banner to the breeze. The Clay people responded by erectmg an 
oak pole at the southwest corner — considerably higher than the 
Polk pole and be gan to "Polk fun" at the other fellows. At night 
some miscreants cut the rope on the Clay pole and attempted to pull 
it down, but it caught in the pulley and. like Scott's coon, refused 
to tumble. But they secured the banner and tearing it apart de- 
posited it in a near-by sink. Of course, this engendered ill-feeling, 
and both parties took their flags down at night to prevent them being 
destroyed. But you say that the Whig flag was already down. So 
it was, but Michael Tromly, the old French jeweler whom every- 
body knew, came to the front and manufactured a mechanical con- 
trivance which he called a "coon," that climbed up the rope, carry- 
ing the flags with it until the top of the pole was reached and then 
you ought to have heard "them "Whigs" yell and yell again. 

We also recollect that two four-horse wagons filled with en- 
thusiastic Democrats left town for Marion, where a big rally was 
held, and it was three days before they got back. They took a 
band along and we remember that Tom Pace, Joe Tyler and Wes- 
ley Johnson were the principal musicians. It would be difficult to 
conceive how we would run a big campaign now without railroads, 
telegraphs and telephones, but they did' then, without seemingly 
losing a step. 

Back in the forties, through the influence of Governor Casey 
and Judge Scates, the First Grand Division of the Supreme Court 
was located here, and Mount Vernon became to a degree the po- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 177 

litical headquarters for Southern Illinois; by reason of all the law- 
yers and politicians — largely one and the same in those days — com- 
ing here and spending days and weeks at the protracted sittings of 
the Supreme Court. There being no railroads to get away on the 
next train, the visitors would settle down for a rest and a good stay 
with us, while they talked law and politics. Among the many who 
came were Abraham Lincoln and Stephen A. Douglas, who after- 
wards, in 1858, publicly discussed what they then talked to a more 
select circle, for, being a waiter boy at the old Mount Vernon Inn, 
where they boarded, we would of an evening sit and listen to them 
go over the same ground in a friendly way. After the discussion 
was over and the meeting broke up, which consisted of the visiting 
lawyers in the hotel waiting rooms, these (afterwards great) men 
would kindly pass their boots over to the writer to be blacked for 
next day's appearance before the august court. With the pittance 
thus secured, we purchased from Han'ey Pace the first pair of red- 
topped boots we ever had, and it goes without saying that when we 
got them on, we felt as big as Lincoln, Douglas and the whole 
court. We considered it no disgrace that we had blacked the boots 
of men like Lincoln and Douglas, and we consider it an imper- 
ishable honor that a few years later we were permitted to serve as a 
"soldier boy" in defense of the Union and the perpetuation of Old 
Glory, under Abraham Lincoln as Commander-in-Chief of the 
Army of the United States, helping to prove the truthfulness of 
Douglas's dying words: "There are but two parties in this gov- 
ernment. Patriots and Traitors," and at the same time helping to 
fix in the Declaration of Independence the enacting clause forever, 
that "All men born free and equal and are endowned by their 
Creator with life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness." Many in- 
teresting and amusing things were said by these men and sometimes 
personal experience, incidents and anecdotes were the order of the 


178 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

evening. One evening Lincoln in his own inimitable way, told a 
story on himself that sent the hearty laugh around the room. He 
said: "When the state capital was moved from Vandalia to 
Springfield, I followed it up to try to make a living at the law, be- 
cause legal business was very scarce in those days. I soon got into 
a case that led me to attend court at Taylorville, I had no horse, so 
I ordered the old rockaway stage coach to call for me next morn- 
ing. Meantime I greased my boots, put on my new jean pants and 
stove-pipe hat and 'spruced up' generally — looking as much like a 
lawyer as I could. When the cab came, it was full and I had to 
take a seat with the driver on top and in front. After we had set 
sail, it being a nice breezy morning, the driver reached down in the 
box and drew forth a raw twist of tobacco and after helping him- 
self, offered it to me with 'take a chaw, mister?' I thanked him, I 
did not chew. After saturating a mouthful of the stuff he puffed it 
out against the wind, causing it to come back over my hat, pants and 
boots— utterly destroying my handsome appearance, but this did 
not disturb him. He then reached down again and brought forth 
a flash of red-eye and after treating himself, offered it to me. Again 
I thanked him, I did not drink. This seemed to confuse him and 
giving me a queer look with his cock-eye, said : 'Mister, do you know 
what I think of your fellers who aint got no small vices?' 'No'; 
said I. Then with a glance of disdain, he drawled out, 'I think 
you make up in big ones what you lack in little ones ; and I can tell 
by the cut of your jib that you are bad after the wimmen.* " The 
dry manner in which he told the story added zest to it and the great 
man, being a perfect Joseph along the line alluded to, also made it 
seem ludicrous. 

After the war Jefferson county struggled along in the Demo- 
cratic rut until finally the old bosses died off and new parties and 
new conditions sprang up and then the new mode of ballot came in 



which protected the voter in marking in his own choice and then Jef- 
ferson county began controHing pohtics, instead of allowing politics 
to control it — which we consider a healthy situation for any coun- 
ty or township. We realize that in the hands of professional poli- 
ticians, politics are tricky — that they "wriggle in and wriggle out, 
leaving the people still in doubt whether the snake that made the 
track is going south or coming back," but we rejoice to believe that 
the people are coming to know "where they are at," and that the 
curse of "bossism" is securely "nailed down" in the junk-pile of 
discarded political methods. 

We could nil this chapter with the praises of our fellow-citi- 
zens who have served us in different public capacities, but lime and 
space forbid. Suffice it to say, that we have had good average 
representatives in our General assemblies all the way through; be- 
sides, Jefferson county has furnished two Lieutenant-Governors — 
Casey and Anderson; two Congressmen — Casey and Anderson 
(Bill) ; one Attorney-General — General Scales, one State Super- 
intendent, Francis G. Blair. During the political upheavals that 
have occurred since the war, several men have secured positions 
that could not be called political triumphs for the successful parties, 
for the reason that the office secured did not come in their own; 
party name. General Anderson's election to Congress came in this 
way; being elected as a Greenbacker when he was a Democrat. 
Captain J. R. Moss and Matthew Telford were elected to the Leg- 
islature as Greenbackers and Farmer Club men, while both were 
Republicans. But for the most part, the Democrats of the county 
have always voted that ticket straight — never allowing other parties 
to get between that party and the offices — always giving a majority 
to its Presidential, Gubernatorial, Congressional and Legislative 
candidates. "Vote 'er straight," was the command of the managers 
and until the adoption of the secret ballot, they took much pains to 

180 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

see that their orders were obeyed, by helping to mark the ballot and 
going with the voter to the box to see that he put it in all right. 
Under the present system a man cannot be compelled to vote as an- 
other shall dictate ; and if he is base enough to sell his vote to another 
who is base enough to buy it, the purchaser can have no evidence 
that the goods will be delivered — so after all, we have fallen on a 
good era as to the voting business — a time and a system when a man 
can vote straight or mix or scratch his ticket, with none to molest or 
make afraid. But under all systems, Jefferson county has stuck to 
its custom of giving a majority to Democratic Presidential nominees 
(except Teddy Roosevelt) from Adams down to Bryan's third run, 
giving that persistent candidate eight hundred majority in 1 896, four 
hundred in 1900 and one hundred and fifty in 1908; and while the 
minor offices are again divided, George L. Ore, Republican, being 
re-elected State's Attorney and Burl Hawkins, Democrat, succeed- 
ing G. W. Highsmith, Republican, as Circuit Clerk. Verily, the 
signs of the times indicate that our politics are growing better. 

There have been several breaks in the chain of Democratic as- 
cendency during the last half century, but not until the Roosevelt 
landslide of 1904, did the whole chain give way — from President 
down to Coroner. It was quite natural that the pendulum should 
swing back to Bryan, because the county on a full vote is still in- 
clined towards its old love — Democracy — and also because it had 
already given Bryan its vote in his two former races. But the coun- 
ty is practically a "stand-off" politically, as the politicians well 
know. Perhaps no more appropriate conclusion could be given this 
little allusion to county politics than a list of the faithful Senators 
and Representatives who have been sent from Jefferson county to 
our State Councils since its organization. 

In the first and second General Assembly, the name of Jeffer- 
son county did not appear, but in the third session (1822) Zadok 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 181 

Casey was in the list of Representatives, accredited to Jefferson 
county. The fourth session had Zadok Casey as a member of the 
House. In the fifth session, Zadok Casey appears as Senator and 
Nicholas Wren as Representative. In the sixth session, Cdsey was 
Senator, but no local Representative. In the seventh, Zadok Casey 
was president of the Senate, and no House Representative. Same 
in the eighth, same as to Senate, with Stinson H. Anderson as Rep- 
resentative. In the ninth, we find the names of both S. H. Ander- 
son and H. T. Pace. In the tenth, H. T. Pace in the House, no 
Jeffersonian in the Senate. In the eleventh General Assembly, first 
session held at Vandalia, we find Stinson H. Anderson, president 
of the Senate and Noah Johnston, Senator, and Harvey T. Pace, 
Representative. In the twelfth, the same as to the Senate, with 
Stephen G. Hicks in the House. In the thirteenth, we find R. A. 
D. Wilbanks, of Jefferson, in the Senate, with Hicks as Represen- 
tative. In the fourteenth, Wilbanks and Hicks again. In the fif- 
teenth, no Jeffersonian in the Senate, but Lewis F. Casey in the 
House. Sixteenth, Zadok Casey again in the Senate as speaker, 
but none in the House. In the seventeenth, we find no JelTersonian 
in the Senate, but Zadok Casey in the House. Eighteenth, no Sen- 
ator, but John Wilbanks in the House. Nineteenth, same except 
we find T. B. Tanner in the House. Twentieth, same except we 
find William B. Anderson in the House. Twenty-first, same. 
Twenty-second, Zadok Casey again in the Senate, with no Jeffer- 
sonian in the House. Twenty-third, no Senator, but Henry M. 
Williams in the House. Twenty-fourth, no Jeffersonian in either 
House, but of course the county was represented by the district 
members. Twenty-fifth, no Senator, but Noah Johnston, Repre- 
sentative, and John A. Wall as assistant doorkeeper. Twenty-sixth 
session, S. K. Casey as member and John A. Wall as sergeant-at- 
arms of the Senate, but no Jeffersonian in the House. Twenty- 

182 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

seventh, S. K. Casey, Senator, and Thomas S. Casey, Represent- 
ative. Twenty-eighth, Thomas S. Casey, Senator, and none in the 
House. Twenty-ninth, Casey in Senate, A. B. Barrett in House. 
Thirtieth, none in Senate, Thomas J. WiUiams in House. Thirty- 
first, same as to Senate, John R. Moss and Alfred Morton Green 
in the House. Thirty-second, same as to Senate, R. A. D. Wil- 
banks in House. Thirty-third, same as to Senate, Seth F. Crews 
and George H. Varnell in the House. Thirty-fourth, same as to 
Senate, George H. Varnell in House. Thirty-fifth, A; M. Strat- 
ton in Senate, Representative from other counties. Thirty-sixth, 
Stratton in Senate, Matthew Telford, Representative. Thirty- 
seventh, none in Senate, Dr. J. H. Watson, Representative. Thirty- 
eighth, same as to Senate and same as to House. Thirty-ninth, 
none in Senate, Samuel H. Watson and William H. Green, Repre- 
sentatives. Fortieth, Joseph T. Payne, Senator, and F. G. Blood, 
Representative. Forty-first, same as to Senate, Norman H. Moss, 
Representative. Forty-second, Dr. J. H. Watson, Senate, none in 
House. Forty-third, Watson in Senate, none in House. Forty- 
fourth, no Jeffersonian in either House. Forty-fifth, none in Senate, 
but W. C. Blair in House, Forty-sixth, none in Senate, but W. C. 
Blair and George B. Welborn in the House. 

So it will be seen that Jefferson county is holding her own in 
Legislative as well as all other matters. 

Politics as applied to state-craft, the science of government is 
quite a commendable avocation, but when simply applied to the 
means of getting into office, or gratifying advantage after getting 
there, it is quite the reverse. And hence, many good people become 
disgusted with what is rightly termed personal politics — and ma- 
chine politics, another spurious article. A prominent Jeffersonian 
recently told us he had seen so much of these kinds of politics and 
political maneuvering, that he felt like drinking a toast to it, and 
this was the toast he proposed: 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO.. ILL. 183 

"Here's to the ins and here's to the outs. 

They are all birds of a feather; 
Here's damn the ins and damn the outs. 

And damn them all together!" 

But we hope and believe that our friend is too sweeping in 
his toast and that hereafter our Jefferson county politicians will oc- 
cupy a higher plane, and politics will be of a purer order and that 
the next historian will find it a pleasure to command them for their 
virtues and allude to politics as we do to religion — as something 
really good for the people and conducive to their general welfare — 
just as we would like to do now and would willingly do, if the facts 
would justify the statement. Let us go back to the beginning and 
seek to review our political youth. Let us select men like the Caseys, 
the Andersons, the Johnsons, the Maxeys, and see if we cannot 
keep a purer political atmosphere around us — especially in Jeffer- 
son county. 



Township Organization — Local Self -Government — Three 
Commissioners Give Way to Sixteen Supervisors as the Governing 
Force — More Officers Always Mean More Cost and More Reve- 
nue and Sometimes Better Government — Not Always. 

Mr. Supervisor, step in and try your skill, 

And give our county craft a "bout." 
If, after a test, your "try" proves ill. 

Then, Mr. Sup., please "step down and out." 

And do not place yourself in the category of 

one of old, who 
Dressed with a little brief authority. 

Cut such antics as to make the angels weep." 

Jefferson county got along fairly well under the County Com- 
missioner system for about fifty years, and perhaps cheaper than 
we do under the township plan. But the idea of local self-govern- 
ment was lost sight of, and the people felt they were not up-to-date 
along this line. They seemed to think that they ought to have a Coun- 
ty Legislature or Congress — just as the state and nation have — so in 
1869, they voted in the township system and no doubt it has come 
to stay. It is claimed that the benefits accruing to the townships, 
locally fully compensate for the increased cost of "running the ma- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 185 

chinery," and this perhaps is so, in the matter of caring for the poor 
of the township and in securing county help for building bridges, 
etc. But in the matter of making better roads, there has been very 
little improvement over the old system. However, "the people 
rule" and all this is the result of their rule, so we pass the subject 
without further comment. Jefferson county has sixteen townships, 
all equal in territory — six miles square — and briefly, we will notice 
them in regular order, beginning in the northwest corner of the 
county with 


This township has Marion county on the north and Washing- 
ton county on the west, Rome and Casner townships east and south. 
Most of its lands are prairie, with surface sufficiently rolling to af- 
ford drainage without artificial means, the principal streams being 
tributaries to Big Muddy, Ray's creek and other small streams. 
It is a splendid farming and stock-raising region and can boast of 
some of the finest farms and some of the most prosperous farmers 
in the county. Among the first settlers were Abraham Casey, James 
Ray, the Baldridges, the Breezes, William Fulton, Stephen Cam- 
eron, French, Roberts, Taylor, Depriest, Bangamon, Woods, 
Reilly, Poston, Clark Casey and others. The first named was a 
brother to Governor Casey. These original settlers gave Grand 
Prairie a good name for intelligence, sobriety and industry, and 
these characteristics have been prominent with the citizens of the 
township through all these years. It was the first township in the 
county to cut loose from the bourbons and assert itself along new 
political lines. Its first marriage was that of Clark Casey 
and Polly Bangamon, the ceremony being performed by 
Governor Casey. The first death was that of Joseph Bald- 
ridge. At first the people voted at Mount Vernon, but 

J% wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

later Grand Prairie precinct was formed, with voting place 
at Paston's Mill. Religious services were held from house 
to house till Pisgah and Gilead churches were built. The first 
supervisor after the adoption of township organization, was Joseph 
Breeze. There is no village in Grand Prairie, but it is near Cen- 
tralia in Marion and Richview and Irvington are close by, in Wash- 
ington county. 


This township lies south of Grand Prairie, along the Wash- 
ington county line and contains fine farming lands. Originally it 
was mostly timber, but of the best varieties, oak, walnut, hickory, 
ash, cherry — with hazel, sumach, etc. It has the same streams as 
Grand Prairie. Among the first settlers was George Casner, for 
whom the township was named. He raised a large family and died 
only a few years ago, leaving his widow on the old farm. Con- 
temporary with him, came Howell, Clark, Burris, Patterson, Creel, 
Daniels, the Laceys, John Holt, Walter Bean, the Champs and 
others whose names are linked with the history of Casner township. 
At first the people beat their meal with pestle in little mortars, but 
the Caseys put up a little mill and worked by hand that would grind 
a bushel or two a day, which was a vast improvement. Mr. Car- 
roll ran a mill near the west side of the township. One of the first 
roads through the township was the Shawneetown and St. Louis 
road coming through Mount Vernon. The first school-houses and 
churches were rude affairs, but back of these, religious services were 
held at private houses, until Reynold's chapel was erected. Rey- 
nolds professed religion as he died and the chapel was named for 
him. The votmg place is at Roachville on the Louisville & Nash- 
ville Railroad, and the result is always a rock-ribbed Democratic 
majority — in fact, it has been said that it would be easy for An- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO.. ILL. 187 

drew Jackson and Stephen A. Douglas to be elected to any office in 
Casner township, from President to constable. Roachville, the cap- 
ital of Casner, is in the south part of the township, but it proved to 
be too far from Mount Vernon and too close to Ashley ever to 
amount to much. The first supervisor was E. V. Harvey. Among 
the prominent citizens have been the Champs, Laceys, Schmidts, 
Clarks, Bledsoes, Severs, Carrolls, Morgans, Watkins, Moores, 
and others whom we do not now recall. Casner is a splendid farm- 
ing region; is well adapted to fruit, grain and stock raising, with a 
little less bourbonism and a few grains more enterprise, energy and 
snap — a good seasoning of ginger — Casner would surprise the other 
parts of the county with her wonderful development. The Chicago, 
Burlington & Quincy Railroad taps Casner. 


is the next in order, lying south of Casner on the Washington line. 
We cannot give the history of these townships as we would like, 
but must confine our remarks largely to actual conditions, which is 
more important for their future welfare. Blissville township dates 
back to 1822-3, when Sherman Ross and Jesse Greene "squatted' 
there, another township of excellent land, part prairie and part 
timber, much the same as the foregoing townships. Knob Prairie 
lies in the south part and was so named from the high knob just 
north of Waltonville. The streams named at first, still follow us. 
Jesse A. Dees, an unique character, was among the first settlers. 
He could neither read nor write, but he could count, and became 
quite wealthy in his day. His life could only be told in a biography 
and we must pass it. The Hirons, the Gilberts, the Fairchilds, the 
Places, the Seiberts, the Johnsons, the Robinsons, the Mannens, 
the Norrises, the McConneheys, the Laurs, the Hicks, and many 

188 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

others came soon after and have helped make the township as de- 
sirable a place to live as any other township in the county. The 
township was named for Augustus Bliss, who died with cholera at 
an early day. Religious and school matters had an even start with 
the township, but as elsewhere, services were held in private homes, 
until Grand Ann church was built and the log school-houses raised. 
The first school-house was near Eli Gilbert's. Zion church is in 
the northern part and there is a Methodist church at old Williams- 
burg. This place was started before war times and until the build- 
ing of the Chester & Wabash road, promised to become a booming 
town; then the business moved to the new town, Waltonville, and 
Williamsburg went into decline. For the most of the time, Wilson 
Robinson kept the post-office and moved it to Waltonville at the 
opening of the road. While at Williamsburg it was called Laur 
in honor of Capt. Joe Laur of the Forty-ninth Regiment. The 
early history of these townships were so similar that it is unnecces- 
sary for us to specialize. Suffice it to say that Blissville is one 
of our very best townships, with a grand future before it. 


Next south of Blissville and bordering on Washington, Frank- 
lin and Perry counties, is also a desirable agricultural region, with 
surface somewhat more broken than the others, but with equally 
good land, with a large growth of timber of the kind to prove it. 
Being remote from trails and towns, this township was slow in set- 
tling up. Among the first settlers were A. McGinnis, John Tur- 
man, James Bellows, Willis Hardwick, the Smiths, the Scroggins, 
Irvins, Morgans, Goddards, etc. This region was so wild that the 
game was a menace to the pioneers, instead of a help as in some 
other parts. When corn or other things were planted, they were 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 189 

subject to be attacked by crows, blackbirds and squirrels, and when 
further advanced wild geese and turkeys tried to finish up the job. 
Deer and wolves and even panthers were a little too common for 
the comfort and ease of women and children. The first comers 
had even harder times than others in securing bread-stuffs, and 
many hollowed out the tops of stumps and beat their corn into mush 
material. These people had to depend upon their own resources 
for the necessaries of life. Buckskin breeches and shirts were as 
common as over-alls are now, and the women wore the same hnsey 
dress the year round. Originally this was part of Elk Prairie, but 
when township organization came it became Bald Hill township. 
John B. Ward was its first supervisor. It used to be another Demo- 
cratic stronghold, but of late years it has generally been Republican 
by a small majority, and is taking on all the modern improvements 
of the day. Since the building of the Mount Vernon & Chester 
Railroad, two good towns have come into existence — Waltonville, 
which is now a bright business town of several hundred inhabitants, 
with up-to-date business (right on the Blissville line) and Sheller, 
another bright little town, a mile or so from the resort known as 
Sheller Lake. Both of these towns are doing big business in all 
lines, including the buying and shipping of stock — Sheller has a 
large Catholic church (Polanders), besides others, and Walton- 
ville has a Universalist, a Methodist and Baptist church and the 
township has its full quota of school-houses. 


Rome township adjoins Grand Prairie on the east and Marion 
county on the north. Its surface is partly prairie and partly tim- 
ber and its soil is quite productive. It is traversed by a branch of 
the Big Muddy and its principal prairie is Jordan's Prairie and the 
town of Rome (since the railroad came, it is called Dix) is in the 

190 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

north edge of it. The township was supposed to be settled by the 
Maxwells, Goins, Whitesides, Taylors, M. D. Bruce and Arba 
Andrews. The last named built the first mill. Originally this town- 
ship was included in Grand Prairie precinct, but on the adoption 
of township organization G. L. Cummings was elected its first 
supervisor and since then, it has been represented by such men as the 
Boggs, the Whites, the Telfords, the Caseys, the Gastons, the 
Hawkms, the Maxfields, the Milburns, the Rileys, the Clayborns, 
the Carpenters, the Wards, and many others we might name. The 
village of Rome was laid out in 1849 by Arba Andrews, and lots 
sold quite readily at small prices and the first business was a grocery 
by John Bostwick, but other business followed and the town was 
put on the map to stay. Rome has its history same as Rome of 
old, but we cannot go into detail. A school-house and two churches 
were soon built and Rome went to housekeeping at home. It is the 
voting place and headquarters politically and socially for the town- 
ship, has village incorporation, has several benevolent orders, be- 
sides its two churches. The township now has its full quota of 
school-houses and its regulation number of politicians — so many in 
fact that recently another voting place had to be established in 
the township to give them all a chance to vote. Politic- 
ally, however, the parties are about equally divided in 
the township, but most generally Democratic. The South- 
ern (or Air Line) Railroad traverses the township from 
north to south and it has plenty of roads and bridges. 
Newton Frost and Henry Posten are old residents here. 


This township lies next west of Mount Vernon and south of 
Rome and was settled about the same time. It was mostly timber at 
the start, but has a good productive soil, somewhat broken in places. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO.. ILL. 191 

but nearly all susceptible of cultivation. It is watered and drained 
by the west fork of Big Muddy — or Casey's fork. All kinds of 
grains, vegetables and fruits are produced from Shiloh soil. The 
very first settler is said to have been Zadok Casey, soon joined by 
other Caseys, the Maxeys, the Johnsons, Depriests, Tylers, the 
Mosses, the Frosts, the Paynes, the Pierceys, the Galbraiths, the 
McMeens, Greers, Webbs, etc. The township has paid consider- 
able attention to stock raising and the Moss family were the first 
to import improved stock, followed by many others. In matters edu- 
cational and religious, Shiloh has always been considered the leader 
and example, whilst others have followed. It had the first and best 
schools and churches and from the very start, Shiloh seemed well 
supplied with teachers and preachers. Woodlawn, a lively village 
on the Louisville & Nashville Railroad, lies principally in Shiloh 
township (it laps over a little into Casner) and is a town of good 
business interests and two railroads, for it now has a line of the 
great Chicago, Burlington & Quincy running through it north and 
south. It formerly had a line from the Louisville & Nashville 
northwardly through its territory, but it was taken up and the "Q" 
built instead. Woodlawn is not slow in anything she undertakes, 
and among other things has furnished us two state Senators in the 
persons of Senators Watson and Payne, and now she has just fur- 
nished us a Representative in the person of her postmaster, Hon. 
George B. Welborn. Woodlawn is an incorporated village and has 
her local institutions just like other towns. It is the capital of Shiloh 
township (a capital township) and both are in the capital county 
of Jefferson. Capt. John R. Moss was the first Supervisor of Shiloh. 
Elsewhere we have spoken of the prominent men Shiloh has pro- 

192 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 


lies south of Shiloh. It is both prairie and woodland, soil much 
the same as the others, watered by branch of the Big Muddy. 
A son of Thomas Hicks was born here m 181 7 — supposed to be the 
first white child born in what is now Jefferson county. John Lee, 
Israel Lanier, John Stillwell, James Dickens, Jonathan Wells, and 
the Bodines, the Osborns, the Hayes, the Quinns came in and com- 
pleted the settlement. Among the first improvements were roads and 
mills. Jonathan Wells put up the first mill — capacity, two bushels 
per day. Education and religious matters were next to receive at- 
tention. The first teacher was Judge D. Baugh, who taught in a 
log house on John Lee's farm. This log house was used for a 
church, also. Later the Christians built a nice church at Wolf 
Prairie and there the Methodists, Baptists and Universalists all wor- 
shipped along with the Christians — a very good way to show that 
they are Christians. McClellan township now has two railroads — 
the Mount Vernon & Chester and the Chicago, Burlington & 
Quincy — running through it, with good stopping places on both 
lines, but no town of any importance. It is thoroughly agricultural 
and Democratic to the core. Its first Supervisor was W. A. Davis, 
Agriculturally speaking, McClellan is hard to beat. It is the home 
of the Davises, Lords, McLaughlins, Grays, Howes, Laceys and 
other prominent families. 


lies next south of McClellan, borders on Franklin county, and 
has good farming lands. Big Muddy creek and other streams make 
part of it quite broken. A great many elk horns were found in this 
territory and hence the name. Elk Prairie. Among the first settlers 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 193 

were the Stephensons, the Whitmans, the Laniers, Kings, the Teet- 
ers, the Martins, Cochrans, the Holders, the Wilbanks, the Pickets 
and the Andersons, Robinsons, Bodines, Petersons and Masons, 
Like others. Elk Prairie suffered for mill facilities and 
roads. Religious and educational interests were allowed to sleep 
for a while but when they did come to the front, they both made 
good headway and today they make a favorable showing with other 
parts of the county. We notice a neat Methodist and good Chist- 
ian church near Dareville. The town of Winfield was in Horse 
Prairie which extended into this township, laid out by Doctor Gee 
and a Mr. Graham. Isaac Boswell, Isaac Clampet and John 
Knowles did business there. Doctor Gee married J. J. Fitzgerrell's 
daughter and began practice there, but soon moved to his farm. A 
good church and school-house was built and Elk Prairie began to 
"show up." Col. G. W. Evans, of the Sixtieth Regiment, was its 
first Supervisor. It is another splendid township, both in land and 
people. Mr. Robinson still lives on the farm he settled sixty years 


is bordered on the north by Marion county, west by Rome town- 
ship^ — both timber and prairie, good soil and a fair class of farmers. 
Casey's Fork and East creek are the principal streams, with others 
amply sufficient for drainage. It has no railroads nor public works, is 
simply agricultural. Among its first settlers were the Fields, for 
whom the township was named. There were Nathan, James and 
Henry. Thomas Jordan came early and kept tavern on the old 
Goshen road which ran through the township. James Foster, Max- 
well and Dave Garrison were soon here and Alfred Finn, John and 
Ben Hawkins, D. Easley, were of the first settlers. John McCon- 
nell, a Mexican soldier, was a great stock raiser and noted farmer 


194 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

of this township. The township is well supplied with school-houses 
and churches and the citizenship of the township is a good average 
of any other in the county. John McConnell was its first Supervisor. 
Its present prominent people are the Garrisons, the Rollisons, the 
Hawkins, the Simmons, the Browns, the Howards, the Wimberlys, 
the Raynors, the Padgets, the Fraziers and others too numerous to 
mention. Oak Grove, Baptists, Mount Zion, Methodist, Panther 
Fork churches and another now building, show that the people of 
Field are keeping up with the procession, religiously, with school- 
houses plentiful. Texico, a nice little business place, is the capital, 
located on the Chicago & Eastern Railroad, near the county line. 


from which we have already drawn much information given 
in other chapters, contains the county seat of the same name, and it 
will not be necessary to say much here. Only that the present city 
of Mount Vernon, which was not even laid out or platted when we 
began this history, lies in the southwest corner of the township with 
a disposition to "slop-over" into both Shiloh and Dodds townships, 
having reached the line of both by new additions. We have al- 
ready given account of the doings of its first inhabitants and as the 
election just held shows that it contains about one-third of the vote 
cast in the county and no doubt one-third of the wealth, we will 
make no attempt in this place to "show " what it is doing, but will 
pass on. Mount Vernon township has three Assistant Supervisors, 
Will Reid IS Supervisor. 


Next township south of Mount Vernon. Dodds is principally 
down in the timber, as there is very little prairie but lots of creek 
bottom in her territory, but no better or more productive land in the 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 195 

whole county. It is tradition that the township was named for 
James Dodds, who came to these native wilds in 1818, and perhaps 
built the first cabin in the township. Joseph Jordan settled the 
Isaac Garrison place at the parting of the Benton and McLeans- 
boro roads. This place was transferred to the Frizzles and many 
will remember the sad event of nearly the whole family dying with 
cholera in 1847, and of their being buried at Old Union. And 
then the farm went into the hands of Isaac Garrison, then came 
Doctor Adams, who afterwards figured in county matters ; then Frank 
Hicks; he was the father of J. R. P. Hicks, who was 
chosen School Commissioner of Jefferson county. Then came Stephen 
Arnold, then Absalom Estes, from whence all the Esteses spring; 
then Joseph Pace, twin-brother of the County Clerk, Joel; then 
came the Rogerses, William Davis, David Shaffer; the latter put 
up a horse mill; also Frank Hicks did the same. Isaac Watson 
was one of the pioneers, of what was then Jackson precinct, now 
Dodds township. W. T. Sanders taught school in a log house built 
OR government land. Rev. Rhodam and George Allen (the latter 
father of John R. and Thomas Allen), held meeting in the cabins 
of Jackson precinct. A Methodist church was organized at an early 
day. Joel Pace, John Rogers, Will Edgington and James Brad- 
ford were members. The first voting place was the old Dodds 
house. John Baugh and H. Gorham were the first justices of the 
peace. R. D. Roane was the first Supervisor. Capt. Samuel Gib- 
son, now retired, of Mount Vernon, was for many years a valued 
citizen of Doods township and improved his surroundings by im- 
porting and selling good stock. Politically, Dodds is almost a 
"stand-off," but generally gives a Republican majority. 


joins Dodds on the north and Franklin county on the south. 
It is another good township and many good farms are seen in all 

196 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

directions. Some fruit is raised and much more might be raised to 
good advantage, as the soil down there will produce almost any- 
thing. The settlement of Spring Garden dates back ninety years. 
Among the early settlers we mention the Smiths, the Hoppers, who 
came in 1816, Atchisons, James Burchell, Wiley Prigmore, Uriah 
Compton, John Hull, Nat Wyatt, Thomas Softly, Matthew Kirk, 
James McCann, William Harmon, the Sweetens, Parretts, etc. 
Many descendants of these pioneers are still in the vicinity with 
descendants of their own, doing well. Schools and religious meet- 
ings were held around the neighborhood, as at first in other town- 
ships, but school-houses and churches soon sprang up and now the 
territory is lined with them. The fact is, Spring Garden has all 
kinds of religion, including the brand known as "none whatever." 
W. S. Bumpus was the first Supervisor. The village of Spring 
Garden was laid out in 1 848 and was getting to be quite a town, 
when a few years ago the Chicago, Eastern & Illinois Railroad was 
built through the township and missed the old town and the new 
town of Ina sprung up and captured most of the trade and took 
the lead. So now Spring Garden has two well-equipped towns and 
a railroad and is forging to the front in enterprise as well as in edu- 
cation and religious matters. It still sticks to its Democracy. The 
town of Bonnie is located near the Dodds and Spring Garden line 
and is the seat of the popular Bonnie camp-meeting grounds. Bon- 
nie has churches, school-houses and a good business. 


The first settlers of Farrington township were more disposed 
to hunt than to farm, for there was sure to be captured by hunting 
more than by farming; but while they had all the fresh meat they 
could eat and then some, they had to hunt for bread-stuff to go with 
it. Farrington is in the northeast corner of the county, bordering 
on Marion county north and Wayne county east — mostly wood- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 197 

land, but some of the richest earth in the whole county. Adams 
Fork and Horse creek are its principal watercourses. Its people 
are farmers and stock raisers. Among its first settlers were the 
Wells, the Gregorys, Haynes. W. B. Johnson, Joseph Norman and 
others. Some of these families accumulated large bodies of land 
and the Gregorys owned at one time nearly two thousand acres of 
as good land as could be found. Doctor Gregory was a typical pio- 
neer character and we have heard him tell of collecting the taxes 
in Farrington when the coon skins and deer hides were a legal ten- 
der and how the people paid these in for taxes. The first citizens 
were of the home-spun, rugged, out-spoken order, and there has been 
no very great change in this respect in the township even to this day. 
Of course, they were favorable to school and churches, but they 
didn't stop their other avocations at their expense. The first roads 
through the township were the Mount Vernon and Maysville and 
Xenia roads. The first Supervisor was M. A. Morrison. The vil- 
lage of Farrington was laid out in 1856, on Jehu J. Maxey's land 
and Lear, Abe Casey, Drs. Johnson and Bradford, Munsell, In- 
galls, some more of the Maxeys, W. L. Young and others helped 
boost it along, but notwithstanding the good men and the beautiful 
location, the town finally went down. Loganville was laid out, but 
never materialized. The Johnsons, Morrisons, Greens, Wilsons, 
Youngs, Burks, Brookmans, Donahoos, and that class of substantial 
citizens are now holding up the interests of Farrington township. 
It is about evenly divided politically. It is certainly a good town- 


This township lies south of Farrington. The surface is some- 
what broken — mostly timber. Puncheon creek. Four Mile, Bear 
creek and Five Mile creek traverse the township and these nearly 
all empty into the Skillet Fork and Wabash rivers on the east. 

198 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

Among the pioneers were Norton, Isaac Casey, Daniel Scott, Ward 
Webber, H. Wade, William Dale, Peter Bruce, Alex Moore, 
James Archie, William Green, the Hunts, Browns, Davises. Web- 
ber settled on the Fairfield road, but finally located at Lynchburg. 
The first roads were the Mount Vernon and Fairfield, and Black 
Oak Ridge roads and then the East Long Prairie road. The first 
Supervisor was S. V. Bruce, followed by the Harlows, Marlows, 
Esmans, Moores, Newtons, etc. Schools and churches came along 
as fast as demanded and now the people are well supplied with 
these. The Southern Railroad (Air Line) passes through Webber 
township from east to west. There are two towns on the road — 
Bluford and Marlow. Bluford has the lead and is becoming a 
town of importance, with much and increasing business. It is eight 
miles from Mount Vernon. Marlow being located between these 
points can never be much of a trading point ; still considerable busi- 
ness is transacted there in the way of shipping fruit, stock, etc. This 
was the home of the Marlows, most of whom have passed, and Dr. 
Newton, the principal man of the town has retired and lives in 
Mount Vernon. Charles Stephenson, a young man, is now the 
postmaster and chief bugler of the town. Much of Webber town- 
ship history is unwritten. Its oldest inhabitant died early in 1909. 


next south of Webber, is one of the best townships in Jef- 
ferson county. It largely lies in Moore's Prairie, which has always 
been considered the cream land of the county ; besides this was the 
very first settled part of the county. School and churches came 
early and have been in business all of these years with increasing 
zeal and usefulness, and if every family is not benefited by them, 
it is their own fault. The first town laid out was Lynchburg and it 
had much business until the Louisville & Nashville Railroad came 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 199 

along and the towns of Opdyke and Belle Rive were started. Col- 
onel Hicks, Dick Lyon, Doctor Gray and other old citizens did 
business in Lynchburg. Jonathan Beliew was one of the first citizens, 
but he stole a horse, sold it in Fairfield, was captured and put in the 
old log jail east of the court-house; escaped; recaptured; escaped 
again and remained escaped. When the railroad came, the busi- 
ness men of Lynchburg went to Belle Rive and Opdyke. Belle 
Rive was laid out in 1871 and had for its first citizens, Jesse Laird, 
the owner of the land, Hughey Eaton, Howard Bondinot Chaney, 
Grimes, Guthrie, Seeley, Hunter, Davenport, Yeakley, Miller, 
Buchanan, Ross, Waters and a host of others. But Belle Rive al- 
lowed Dahlgren, across the line in Hamilton county, to get ahead 
of it in business — still Belle Rive is a desirable place to live. It 
has churches, schools, lodges and good society. Opdyke was also 
laid off in 1871 and has not been idle in the way of building up and 
improving. Its first people were Doctors Stonemetz and Montgomery, 
the Jones, Estes, Phillips, Keller, Alexander, Adams, Allen, etc. 
Among the first things came school-houses and churches and no 
part of the county is better equipped with these than is Opdyke and 
Pendleton township. Opdyke has all the modern improvements and 
is considered a pleasant suburb to Mount Vernon — the King City 
of Southern Illinois. The interests and population of Pendleton 
have grown so fast that there are two voting places now — one at 
Opdyke and one at Belle Rive. The township generally gives a 
Republican majority. W. A. Jones was Pendleton's first Super- 

moore's prairie township. 

In the early history of Moore's Prairie, the history of the whole 
was so interwoven that it is difficult to distinguish between what is 
now Pendleton and Moore's Prairie townships, but for the geo- 

200 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO.. ILL. 

graphical lines dividing them. Moore's Prairie was settled first of all, 
but Mount Vernon soon drew many of her settlers to that place and 
the real occupancy came later. A man by the name of Moore 
was the first settler. He went to the nearest mill, thirty miles off, 
for meal and was never heard of afterwards, and there seemed to be 
no doubt that he was murdered by the Indians who then in- 
fested the country around there. Among the first settlers of the 
Prairie were the well known people: Wilkeys, Atchisons. Cren- 
shaws, Irvins, Cooks, Q. A. Wilbanks, C. H. Judd, the Kniffins, 
Smiths, Birkheads, Cofields, McPhersons, Hicks, Aliens, Zahns, 
Karns, and so on down. Q. A. Wilbanks was the first Supervisor. 
He was also Moore's Prairies' leading merchant. Everybody remem- 
bers the old Wilbanks stand, where all the political meetings used 
to be held. After the railroad came, he moved his store to Belle 
Rive. Schools and churches have flourished in Moore's Prairie 
ever since civilization reached it. Moore's Prairie also had the first 
good roads in the county and it has always been noted for its good 
farms and intelligent farmers. Like the other townships, it was at 
first Democratic, but of late years, goes Republican. Moore's 
Prairie will hold its own against all comers. 

So much for the townships. It would have been a pleasure to 
have enlarged on these and given even more history, but each town- 
ship and its interests have spread out so that it is impossible to tell 
the whole tale in one book. But these are the main facts to be treas- 
ured up and remembered. Township control has no doubt helped in 
the development and improvement of Jefferson county and so long 
as the people select good, trustworthy township officers the interests 
of the whole county as well as the townships are subserved. 



Their Comings and Goings. To be or not to be — That's the 
question? Whether it is best to bear the Ills we Have or Fly to 
Those we Know not of? 

"Why should any of us die — without the aid of a doctor?" 


As noted heretofore. Dr. John Watson, the progenitor of the 
Watson family, was the first doctor to locate here — in 1821. He 
had but little to do, for the people had not then learned to be sick 
or feeble ; and besides, there were but few people to get sick. 

Other so-called doctors came and went during the early period 
of the settlement here, but as they did not leave their impresss on 
any of the sand-stone monuments of that day, seems to evidence 
the fact that they had but little business. Dr. J. C. Gray came 
later and seemed to have things his own way for many years. He 
was a good doctor and truly a unique character. Dr. William H. 
Short was another. Both practiced, lived and died here. Doctor 
Gretham came from Equality and Dr. Thomas Johnson, "Uncle 
Jackey's" oldest son. came from Kentucky and he and Gretham 
practiced for many years in partnership, but both passed on. 

In 1 846, Dr. W. Duff Green came from Kentucky. His fa- 
ther, of the same name and profession, came with him, but never 

202 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

practiced here, for he was well advanced in age and his remains re- 
pose in Old Union cemetery. Doctor Green was thoroughly edu- 
cated, was a school-mate with John C. Breckinridge. He practiced 
at Hartford, Kentucky, before coming here. He then practiced 
two years in Pulaski, Tennessee, then located in Mount Vernon, 
where he had not only Mount Vernon and Jefferson county, as his 
field of practice, but was called to various points in Southern Illi- 
nois. He was a skilled physician, an upright man, not only that 
he walked upright, but a good and useful citizen in every respect. 
He was an ardent and consistent Democrat of the old school, was 
quite prominent as an Odd Fellow and reached the highest places 
in the order. He was noted for being generous and zealous in be- 
nevolences, but acted through organizations. He was president of 
the original Mount Vernon Railroad Company and did as much 
as any one, if not more, to secure the first railroad to Mount Vernon. 
To him, we owe all the eastern part of Mount Vernon, as the land 
east of Eigth street all belonged to him. He was married in 1 844 
to a Miss Morton at Hartford, Kentucky. They were the par- 
ents of Morton Green, attorney of Gainsville, Texas; William H., 
our Mount Vernon attorney ; Doctor Earl, of our city ; Duff, who 
died ; and the Missess Inez, Laura Cora, Minnie Madie — compos- 
ing one of the most affectionate and "inner" home circles we ever 
knew. The doctor's wife died in 1902, and the doctor followed 
her soon afterward, as did also two of the daughters. 

Dr. H. S. Plummer came from Ohio in the fifties and es- 
tabhshed himself in a good practice. In 1860. he was married to 
Miss Martha, daughter of H. T. and Nancy Pace, and to them 
have been born: Mrs. Kelley; Raymond; Mrs. Lewis; Mrs. Omar 
Pace; Mrs. Oscar Fly and Miss Grace, and one son. Gales, now 
in business elsewhere. He is a full-fledged Republican and has 
served as Mayor of Mount Vernon and in other positions. He also 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 203 

was a surgeon in the army and at one time was in charge of the 
hospital at Nashville, Tennessee. He is still practicing medicine 
at the age of eighty years. 

Dr. H. J. Peavler was another unique character who prac- 
ticed here for many years and died here. His widow still lives at 
the family home near the Supreme Court house. 

Dr. John N. Johnson was one of the old line doctors, but he 
was generally in other business too much to follow his profession. 
Dr. W. M. A. Maxey and Doctor Frost, above town also looked 
after the sick in their neighborhoods. Other doctors came and went — 
perhaps because they were not called often enough to insure them a 
living — hence they moved on. 

Dr. J. W. Hitchcock, father of our photopragher, spent his 
last days here, but did not practice his profession. He often told 
the writer that he desired to die without the aid of a physician. 


Among those who are with us yet, we may mention: 
DR. J. H. MITCHELL, son of Doctor Mitchell, of Williamson 
county. It will be remembered that Miss Moulton, an eastern school 
teacher, who taught here in the fifties, was married to Doctor Mitch- 
ell, Sr., and took charge of the education of the doctor's large family 
of boys — and everybody says she made a good job of it. Dr. John 
H. is one of those boys, and is too well known to require eulogy 

DR. EARL GREEN, son of Dr. Duff Green — a "chip off the old 
block" — a graduate of the medical schools and has attended lec- 
tures in Europe as well as America. He has taken his father's 
place in the profession here, and is reaching out after greater fields 
of usefulness. He is a bachelor. 

204 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

DR. WALTER WATSON, son of Joel F., another graduate in 
medicine, proved himself a splendid physician, but like many other 
professional men, took more to politics and ease, and has virtually 
abandoned the practice and is looking after his financial interests, 
which are extensive. 

DRS. GEE, two of them, father and son, are among the best 
doctors. The father. Dr. I. G. Gee, some years ago removed here 
from Winfield in the south part of the county, where he practiced 
his profession and farmed-having married J. J. Fitzgerrell's daugh- 
ter. Young Doctor Gee married Colonel Evan's daughter, pays 
strict attention to duty, and is always ready for business. 

DR. J. W. HAMILTON is a physician in the prime of life and in 
the prime of experience in his line. He is one of the principal sur- 
geons at the Mount Vernon hospital and one of the upholders of 
that important institution, which was recently burned down, but 
will be rebuilt for greater usefulness. Doctor Hamilton is now the 
principal owner of the hospital. 

DR. HARDY SWIFT, of the hospital, is a home product, son of 
James Swift, an old citizen. He is a progressive, wide-awake, up-to- 
date physician and has his eyes fixed toward the top of the ladder. 

DR. JUDSON POOL, another aspiring young doctor, is earning 
fame for his name in the profession. He is also connected with the 
hospital and is having a large outside practice. He is a son of an 
old citizen, W. H. Pool, and a son-in-law of our old army comrade, 
Pate Daniels, of Waltonville. 

DR. ANDY HALL is more advanced in age and experience, hav- 
ing had army practice as well as general practice for many years. 
The hospital also has the advantage of his experience. He is a son 
of Colonel Hall, of Hamilton county. He is a good doctor. The 
doctor was with the army in the Philippines. 

CHARLES HALL, a nephew of Doctor Andy, is making himself 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 205 

known and is felt in the practice of his profession. He has just set 
sail for the harbor of success, and was recently wedded to Miss 
Alice Allen, daughter of our prominent fellow-citizen, John Rhod- 
am Allen, a son of the late George W. Allen. 

DR. A. M. FROST. For more than half a century Jefferson 
county has had a Doctor Frost, but not this one. He has recently lo- 
cated here and is a descendant of the old Dr. Frost. He is full 
of vigor and medical lore and promises to keep well toward the 
front in the profession. 

DOCTOR MORGAN moved here from Dahlgren and is kept rea- 
sonably busy in curing the ills the flesh is heir to. He seems to be 
well versed in his profession and, as he says, belives in mixing com- 
mon sense with his medicines. His popularity is on the increase. 

J. W. ROSS came from Belle Rive, where he performed well 
his part in the work of mercy, which is a leading characteristic of 
the profession. He has built a handsome residence on West Broad- 
way and has come to stay. He is a good doctor. 

DOCTOR LEVICK has been here several years. He has had a fair 
practice and is a doctor of long experience. He also has a drug 
annex to his doctor's office on South Tenth street. He has an 
X-ray and an automobile, which he uses in his practice. 

DR. J. W. GILMORE is one of the youngest men in the profes- 
sion, but he is fresh from the fountain-head of medical learning and 
is thoroughly up-to-date. He is also a factor at the hospital and 
there is a bright future before him. 

DR. JOHN T. WHITLOCK, another Jefferson county boy, son of 
George Whitlock, of Field township, is a factor in the hospital 
force and in the practice of his profession. He is well up in the art 
of healing the "ills the flesh is heir to" and is fast forging his way 
to the front. 

DOCTOR CURTIS practices osteopathy and is said to be well up 

206 wall's history of jefferson cc, ill. 

the science of curing people by the methods prescribed by the os- 
teopathy school of medicine. 

DR. s. M. ROBINSON came from Franklin county, was a doctor 
of long experience and had a good practice. He had his office at 
his residence on South Tenth street. He died in February, 1909. 
DR. MOSS MAXEY, son of J. C. Maxey and son-in-law of Al 
Tanner, is another young doctor of aspiring build. He is having 
a good practice and having good success in his work. Being a 
descendant of both the Moss and Maxey families, he is to be reck- 
oned with in the practice. He is at present county physician. 

DR. TODD WARD, son of G. F. M. Ward, is not to be ignored. 
He is thoroughly wrapped up in his profession, is paying strict at- 
tention to business and is increasing the circles of his practice as 
briskly, perhaps, as any doctor in town. He has located and built 
a handsome residence on North street. This comprises the present 
list of practicing physicians, and certainly there is no need of being 
sick long at a time ; we ought to either get well — or take an "outing 
on the other shore." 

Then there is Dr. W. C. Pace, of Ashley; properly, he is one 
of us — a son of Uncle Joel and Aunt Parmelia Pace. He went 
west to grow up — with Ashley — and stayed there. But he forgot 
to get married — and there he is — a good doctor and a splendid 

And there is Dr. J. H. Watson, of Woodlawn — he's a Mount 
Vernon boy — having inherited whatever good qualities he may have 
from his early associations with us. He has made a good record as 
a practicing physician. He was a son of the late John H. Watson, 
who died in 1861. He has "meddled" a little in Democratic poli- 
tics and was elected to the State Senate- for four years, and also 

We have before us a copy of the "Jeffersonian." dated March 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 207 

25, 1853, and in it we find the professional cards of Dr. N. R. 
Casey, son of Zadok, who afterwards moved to Mound City and 
practiced there, besides being elected Mayor of the place and being 
sent to Legislature. 

Also of Dr. John C. Gray, who filled his mission here and died 
among us and Doctor Powell, an oculist, who at that time practiced 
in Mount Vernon. Dr. P. W. Whitlock is our present op- 
tician and a first class one at that. Doctor Arendale is devoting his 
time and attention to the Capital Hotel and is not mentioned in the 
above list. Dr. J. H. Newton has recently come here from Mar- 
low, but has retired from the practice of medicine and is a land agent. 

Thus we have tried to deal fairly with the medical fraternity. 
If, in any way, we have failed to do so, "equal and exact justice" 
will surely come to them in the "sweet bye and bye." 



Two Jefferson County Children up in it all Night — Rome 
Township Furnishes two Thrilling Incidents of Lost and Found 
Children — Fifty and Eighty-six Years Ago. 

"Up in a balloon, sailing round the moon." 
"I thought you were Ingen." 

When our first settlers came to Jefferson county they came 
with ox-carts, gigs, or horseback and on foot, and after leaving the 
old Goshen road, had to clear a way for their travel. Since then, 
we have seen all the modern modes and implements of travel com- 
ing to us — the two-horse-wagon, the old stage coach, the carriage 
or buggy, the railroad, the bicycle, and automobile, and even the 
air-ship and the balloon. Our people have patronized them all. Our 
present story is about a couple of Jefferson county children travel- 
ing through Jefferson county in a balloon and were we not personally 
cognizant of the facts as we write them we would doubt the state- 
ment being strictly true, but we do not tell the tale as it was told 
to us, but as we vividly remember the facts. We give them as they 
were impressed on our mind over fifty years ago, and here they are : 

In September, 1 858, the state fair was held at Centralia. Each 
evening Professor Wilson went up in his big balloon for the edifica- 
tion of the people, sailing away a few miles and being back for a like 
performance next day. On the last evening he sailed away in the 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 209 

direction of Jefferson county until lost sight of. He came down at 
the farm house of a Mr. Harvey in Rome (now Dix) neighbor- 
hood, and was talking with Mr. Harvey abount hauling himself and 
balloon back to Centralia ; meanwhile he had fastened the grab-hook 
of his balloon to a rail in an old worm fence. Mr. Harvey's two chil- 
dren, aged six and four years, respectively, asked to be placed in 
the basket and the professor picked up one and the father the other 
and seated them therein, and resumed their conversation, 

A sudden gust of wind swayed the balloon and up it went, sail- 
ing away to the southwest, leaving the parents frantic with fright 
and the professor utterly dismayed. Imagine, if you can, the wild 
excitement as the news spread throughout the neighborhood and 
down to Mount Vernon. It was nearly dark when the monster 
broke its moorings and sailed away, but that did not prevent the peo- 
ple from scanning the upper darkness and searching the woods in 
hopes of finding some trace of the children; but the night passed 
without a ray of hope and its darkness was not to be compared 
with the darkness that filled the hearts of the parents and friends, 
and everybody. 

Not a word came until 8 o'clock next morning, when a horse- 
man came speedily from the southeast, bringing the joyful tidings 
that the children were safe and sound. Shout after shout rent the 
air as the wagon came up the road bearing not only the little ones 
but also their parents, who had hastened out to meet them. "Home 
Again" was struck up by the old original Mount Vernon brass 
band and was heartily joined in by the multitude, and Mount Ver- 
non had a glorious "home-coming" never to be forgotten by those 

The wonderful voyage as recited by the six-year old girl, she 
being the older, was simple but thrilling. She said they cried for 
papa and mamma in the dark till brother fell asleep, and she took 


210 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

her apron and covered him up. She remembered of hearing dogs 
bark, but could see or hear nothing else, excepting occasionally a 
star peeped through the clouds. Becoming numb with cold she, 
too, fell asleep and only remembered feeling a jolt sometime in the 

Just before day the next morning, 'Squire Atchison, living in 
the lower edge of Moore's Prairie, went early to his barn to feed 
his horses, and seeing some monstrous thing in a big tree standing 
near, he raised the alarm and soon the people gathered to behold 
the miracle of two children nestled in the basket of Professor Wil- 
son's big balloon. They were soon brought safely to earth again and 
after a thorough warming and partaking of a good breakfast, they 
were brought to Mount Vernon — and their parents. 

The writer has passed through many army experiences, night 
raids and mid-night marches, but never one more wild and exciting 
than that night's search for the lost children in the "jungles and up- 
per air of old Jefferson." And he believes now, as he did then, 
that Providence managed the balloon, after the carelessness of man 
permitted it to carry off the heart treasures of the parents; showing 
plainly that "Man's extremity is God's opportunity." 


As a campanion piece to this thrilling incident, we deem it 
appropriate to give another Rome township incident of a lost child 
and the poignant grief of the parents. We give this incident as it 
was written by one of the neighbors shortly after it happened : 

"In the fall of 1822, Thomas Howell resided in the edge 
of Jordan's Prairie, near where Ignatius Bruce lived. This is the 
same Howell that succeeded Watkins, the first Sheriff of Jefferson 
county. It was Sabbath and Zadok Casey had just read an open- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 211 

ing chapter when a man on horseback came galloping up, announc- 
ing that Howell's little boy, Erasmus, aged six or seven years, was 
lost m the woods. Rev. Casey closed the services at once, advising 
everybody to help find the lost child and a vigorous search was at 
once begun. The forests contained wild beasts and the settle- 
ments few. The parents were frantic. The search was kept up day 
and night until the following Wednesday night without finding a 
trace of the child and despair settled upon the minds of all. On 
Thursday morning, Green P. Casey was up early feeding his horse 
near his old place on the Vandalia, afterwards Centralia road, 
when in the southeast direction he heard a wail, but whether it came 
from a child or a panther, he could not tell, but was impelled to go 
and see, at the risk of his own safety. So bridling his horse and 
without hat, he rode in the direction of the noise. Finally he came 
to a clump of high grass from which the voice seemed to come. He 
called "Erasmus, is that you? " No answer. He called again, 
but no answer. Finally as he rode around in the high grass, he 
espied Erasmus in a recumbent position with his eyes wildly star- 
ing at him. He addressed the child kindly and gradually the boy 
seemed to recover from his wildness and said: "The reason I did 
not answer was, I was afraid you was Ingen." Casey took the child 
to his home and they fed him what bread and milk they thought it 
safe to give him. The little fellow had starved five days. As soon 
as possible, Mr. Casey took the child on the horse before him and 
hastened to Howell's to let the grief-stricken mother know that her 
Erasmus was safe. He met men on the hunt and they fired off guns 
to notify other hunters that the lost was found. By the time they 
reached Howell's, quite a procession had formed, and when the 
dazed mother saw her child and clasped him to her bosom with joy, 
there was not a dry eye among that throng of backwoodsmen — 'twas 
like the shepherd finding the lost sheep) — and joy reigned supreme. 

212 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

When Casey found the httle fellow, he had a large hickory nut with 
the hull on it, which he had bitten with his little teeth in his extreme 
hunger. His clothes were almost torn from his body by the briars 
and bushes." 

Other Jefferson county townships may have tales to tell, but 
Rome carries the banner for "lost and found" children. Green P. 
Casey died December 23, 1857. 

Other balloon incidents and accidents have happened in the 
county since the feat recorded above and of course the end is not 
yet. About fifteen years ago, a young man went up at the old fair 
ground on a trapeze and sailed away to the northeast. He was 
seen to fall and his lifeless body was found in David Warren's 
field. Another man named Jones made ascensions here every day 
for a week, coming down without mishap, but the very next week 
he fell from his balloon at Du Quoin and was killed. Recently a 
big balloon called the "Yankee" went up at St. Louis to win the 
world's prize for making the greatest distance before lighting, but it 
was forced to come down near Cravat in this county for repairs, 
much to the edification of the Jeffersonians in that vicinity. It went 
up again, sailed all night and landed in Georgia, but the Cravat 
incident made it lose the sought-for prize. It has often been dem- 
onstrated that the balloon is not a reliable mode of air locomotion. 
It enables the crowd on terra firma an opportunity to test the rub- 
ber in their necks, but it is always dangerous to the parties "up in 
the balloon." But the air-ship promises to be a very different thing. 
It can be and will be so constructed that it can be managed so as to 
make it a vehicle of travel from one given point to another and our 
prediction is that the next Jefferson county historian will be al- 
lowed to record the literal fulfillment of this prophecy. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 213 


There seems to be no doubt that Andrew Moore was the first 
white man to settle in Moore's Prairie — or in Jefferson county, as 
to that matter. He erected a double cabin on the Goshen road and 
there he resided with his family when there were none to molest 
or make afraid, except occasional bands of roving Indians. He 
must have settled there as early as 1810 and Crusoe on his lonely 
island was not more alone than Moore and his family. He seemed 
to be a pioneer of true mould — yearning for freedom in its rawest 
sense. He was self-exiled from civilization, seeking the solitudes 
of the pathless woods. He did not burn the bridges behind him, 
simply because there were none to burn. He fished, hunted, cut 
bee trees and raised a truck garden, strictly for home consump- 
tion, seemed to have no fear of wild beasts or Indians and felt as 
secure in his cabin as he would in a fortified castle. Moore and 
his ten-year-old boy one day went to the Jordan settlement many 
miles away to have some corn made into meal, expecting to get back 
that night. But they never came. Mrs. Moore, after waiting all 
next day in vain, took the other children and set out for the Jor- 
dan mill to learn what had happened to her loved ones. She never 
learned. They had got their grinding and started home on time 
and that was the last seen of them. The woods were scoured, but 
no trace could be found. Mrs. Moore-heart-broken and desolate, 
returned to her cabin but could not stand it — she removed with her 
little ones to the Saline Salt Works settlement, but a few years 
later returned and occupied the old cabin, together with others who 
came to locate. A few years later a hunting party found a human 
skull, which Mrs. Moore recognized as her husband by a missing 
tooth. She took it to her home and cherished it as long as she 
lived. No other intelligence of Moore and son was ever received by 

214 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

the family and there seemed to be no doubt that they were killed 
by Indians and devoured by wild beasts. Tradition gives us the 
sequel to this horrible tragedy. It has been said that Moore and 
some of his friends from the Saline settlement were out in the woods 
splitting some board timber, when a couple of painted red-skins 
came upon them and it looked like something must be done to get 
rid of them. Moore was driving a wooden wedge into the log, 
which they expected to make into boards. By signs, Moore showed 
his apparent anxiety to get the log open by pulling while his friend 
mauled. Finally the Indians showed signs of wanting to help. 
They took a good grip on either side of the log with their fingers 
well down in the apperture, when Moore, by a dexterous stroke of 
the maul, hit the wooden wedge, causing it to fly out — catching the 
fingers of the red-skins so as to hold them fast in the closed fissure of 
the log. As soon as possible, Moore and his friends relieved them 
but they went away with revenge (the Indian characteristic) de- 
picted on their faces, and it is believed that they waited for a chance 
to "get even" with Moore and over-did the thing by killing him. 

Maxey Wilkey was a soldier of 1812, and claimed to have 
been at the death of Tecumseh, who was killed at the battle of 
Thames. At the close of the war, Mr. Wilkey married a Miss 
Caldwell, came to Jefferson county and settled in Moore's Prairie 
in 1816. After the Moore tragedy, the Wilkeys, Crenshaws, the 
Cooks, Atchisons, were the first settlers of the Moore's Prairie sec- 
tion. In Atchison's big tree near his residence is where Professor Wil- 
son's ballon settled with the Harvey children in it, on the fearful 
night recorded above. So it will be seen that Moore's Prairie has a 
good share in the early tragedies with Rome township. 

Lewis Watkins, Jefferson county's first Sheriff, finally moved 
back to Moore's Prairie, while Howell, the next Sheriff, located in 
Rome township and was the father of the lost child, Erasmus. 


MOUNT Vernon's great cyclone. 

The Destruction it Wrought — The Spirit it Aroused — The 
Industries that Have Come in its Wake — The Greater Mount Ver- 
non — The King City. 

"Thus man may build, encumbering the sod; 
And where this pygmy delver holdeth sway, 
It seems the burly Titan may have trod. 
And toiled through hours of his primal day; 
And yet, one stroke — a flash of fire from God — 
And man's creations, crumbling, shrink away." 

Mount Vernon has passed the point where it depends upon the 
county trade alone for prosperity, but has sought prosperity in the 
securing of manufacturing industries. Hence, we esteem it proper 
that we notice them as the real result of our cyclone — and then re- 
fer to the cyclone itself. First, we refer to the Mount Vernon Car 
Manufacturing Company, manufacturers of freight cars of every 
description, barrel cars, box cars, caboose cars, coal cars, construc- 
tion cars, mine cars, drop bottom cars, dump cars, flat cars, furniture 
cars, hopper bottom cars, hay cars, logging cars, long flat cars for 
show purposes, mining cars, ore cars, phosphate cars, refrigerator 
cars, stock cars, tank cars, car wheels, engine wheels, passenger 
wheels, car and engine castings of all kinds and car forgings of all 
kinds, was established in 1 890. The company employs an average 

216 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

of eight hundred men, and its daily capacity is twenty freight cars 
and three hundred car wheels. It has turned out more than twenty 
million dollars' worth of work since starting, which has been sent to 
all parts of the country, including Canada, Old Mexico and South 
America. It numbers among its customers all the leading railroads 
of the United States. Since its establishment, it has paid out over 
three million dollars for wages and is now paying out between three 
and four hundred thousand dollars annually in wages. 

New and improved machinery is being added constantly, to 
keep up with improved methods and new standards being adopted 
by the railroads. The foundry is a very important part of the 
works, where the latest and most scientific methods are used, in- 
cluding the analysis of every pound of iron and fuel going into the 
cupalos, and every cast that is taken out. A very complete chem- 
ical laboratory, with every known appliance for the analysis and 
testing of the metals and fuels used, is established in the basement 
of the new building, with a first-class chemist in charge. This, with 
first-class foundry practice, enables the company to manufacture 
wheels to meet all kinds of specifications and stand the severest tests 
required by the different railroads. 

In addition to the new work manufactured, the company also 
has an extensive repair department, where they repair old cars for 
railroads. They have large trackage, used especially for this pur- 
pose. The plant, being equipped with the most modern machinery, 
is able to compete with any of the leading car works of the country. 

The company has just completed and moved into a handsome 
three-story office building, a credit to any city. The 
first floor of the building is used for the chemist's office and labor- 
atory, clerk's room, wash room, storage rooms for files, records, blue 
prints, etc. An emergency hospital will also be arranged in one 
of the rooms on the first floor, where employes that are injured may 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 217 

be cared for. The second floor is occupied by the secretary's office, 
superintendent's office, general office, draftman's office, railroad in- 
spector's room, time-keeper's and paymaster's office, stationery room 
and vault. The third floor is occupied by the president's office, the 
vice-president's and treasurer's office, directors' room, consultation 
room, vice-president's secretary, bookkeepers, telephone room and 
lavatory. All of the departments are handsomely decorated and 
furnished. The building throughout is equipped with every modern 
convenience, being especially designed and built for the convenience 
of the business. 

A system of telephones and electric bells is used for commu- 
nication with the different departments and the Western Union Tele- 
graph Company wires and long distance telephone are installed 
in the building. 

The officers of the company are D. O. Settlemire, recently de- 
ceased, president; W. C. Arthurs, vice-president and treasurer; 
R. K. Weber, secretary; Frank Snyder, superintendent; G. G. 
Gilbert, attorney. 

Mount Vernon has one good coal mine, which furnishes a 
good article of coal and helps supply the great local demand for 
fuel, as supply the engines on the Louisville & Nashville Railroad. 
It was put down by John Gibson and other enterprising citizens 
now gone, but — their works do follow them. 

The Citizens Gas, Electric and Heating Company of Mount 
Vernon was organized April 26, 1902, and incorporated May 1 3th 
of the same year, with a capital stock of two hundred thousand dol- 
lars. The officers are W. H. Schott, president; Anthony C. Hunt, 
vice-president; H. R. Kingman, secretary and treasurer. This 
company succeeded the Mount Vernon Water Company and the 
Mount Vernon Electric Company, affecting a combination of both 
plants. When the plants were moved and rebuilt in 1903, gas 

218 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

works and a central heating plant were added. It has in operation 
three thousand five hundred miles of electric circuit, eighteen miles 
of water mains, ten miles of gas mains, ten miles of hot water heat- 
ing mains. The capacity of the electric light plant is two hundred 
kilowatts, that of the water works four million gallons per day, with 
a reservoir capacity of three hundred and ninety million gallons. 
The capacity of the gas works is seventy-five thousand cubic feet of 
gas per day, and that of the heating plant seventy-five thousand 
square feet of radiation. The utilities furnished by this company are 
electric current for domestic, commercial and decorative lighting and 
power; gas for fuel, light and power; city water for domestic and 
manufacturing purposes and fire protection ; central station hot water 
heating for residences, churches, clubs, offices and stores. It furnishes 
to the city seventy-five electric street arc lights, burning all night and 
every night in the year, sixty-two fire hydrants, two public water 
fountains, free lights at city hall, public library and fire deparmtent, 
and city fire alarm system. All of the equipment is first class and the 
company is managed in a business like manner. With such public 
utilities as are furnished by .this-c/jsapany, the people of Mount Ver- 
non enjoy every convenience that could be found in the largest 

The Chicago Tie Preserving Company, which is utilizing thou- 
sands of feet of timber heretofore considered worthless; the Royal 
Knitting Company, lately removed from Chester and now giving 
employment to nearly a hundred persons. 

The Mount Vernon Ice & Storage Company was incorporated 
October 16, 1903. The capital stock is twenty-five thousand dol- 
lars. The stockholders and directors are Herbert R. Kingman, 
Wilbur Ayers, G. Gale Gilbert, John R. Allen, L. L. Emmerson, 
Frank E. Patton, and J. H. Maxey. The officers are J. R. Allen, 
president; Wilbur Ayers, vice-president; J. H. Maxey, secretary 
and treasurer. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 219 

Then comes the Mount Vernon Canning and Preserving Fac- 
tory, which promises to be another of Mount Vernon's great and 
important industries. For the past few years it has been leased to 
the T. A. Snider's Cincinnati Preserving and Catsup Company, and 
each year has used nearly one hundred thousand bushels of toma- 
toes in putting up the Snider brand of catsup, which readily sells in 
every market of the world. H. L. Dryer is local manager of the 
plant and employs about sixty men and women during the tomato 
season, a great help to Mount Vernon. It is the intention to enlarge 
the plant and in addition to the preserving process, can all kinds 
of vegetables and fruits, which will very greatly increase the outlay 
of money in our midst, by giving more work, and buying the farmers' 

Then we have a branch of the Nashville, Tennessee Knitting 
Factory, which employs as high as seventy-five or one hundred 
women and girls, at remunerative wages, and sends its goods to all 
the markets of the country. 

Then we have an extensive brick and tile factory, doing a 
good business and giving employment to many workers. 

These are the principal industries of Mount Vernon, but she 
is continually reaching out for more and she generally gets what 
she goes for. All these industries and the wonderful building up of 
the town have come about since the town was devasted and appar- 
ently ruined by the great cyclone of 1 888. 


Mount Vernon has had several disastrous fires, but its great- 
est calamity visited it on the evening of February 1 9, 1 888, when, 
without warning a cyclone swept across it from the southwest to the 
northeast through a densely built portion of the city, in a track about 

220 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

a half of a mile in width and more than a mile in length, 
leaving wreck and ruin in its wake, and bringing sor- 
row on account of deaths, injuries and loss of prop- 
erty. In a few days a place of desolation was transformed into one 
of activity and life, and all traces of the track of the storm were 
blotted out and the ruins were replaced by beautiful and substantial 
buildings. The city has continued to thrive and prosper and now 
with its railroads, car-works, gas and electric light plant, knitting 
factory, coal mine, brick plant, ice plant and other industries, its 
various lines of business, wholesale and retail, its beautiful public 
buildings, its miles of paved streets and granitoid and brick side- 
walks, its beautiful lawns and cozy homes, make its population of 
more than ten thousand prosperous citizens, and extend an 
invitation and inducement to others to locate among us and cast 
their lot with us for the accomplishment of other enterprises and 
keeping this city in its present position in the front ranks of the many 
beautiful and prosperous cities of the great state of Illinois. 

Many, very many, things occurred during this great cyclone, 
which lasted but a minute, that might be told and sworn to by eye- 
witnesses — that, ordinarily could not be believed. The disaster 
came at the end of a murky, warm, winter day, a few minutes after 
the people had arrived home from their afternoon Sunday schools. 
It came without warning — struck the town at the Beal homestead, 
swooped down through the center of the town destroying all the 
houses in its course and lifted just after it had leveled the Franklin 
school-house — about four hundred and fifty houses were totally 
wrecked. Thirty persons were either killed or died from the hurts 
received. The Supreme Court house, which was not in the storm s 
path, was converted into a hospital and the Presbyterian church near 
it into a depot of supplies, and money and supplies were poured in 
from people from nearly every town and city until about one hundred 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 221 

fifty thousand dollars' worth had been received and distributed to the 
helpless, destitute citizens of the devastated town. After hunting 
for and caring for the dead and wounded, all through the rainy, 
cold terrible night, and fighting fires which broke out in the wreck- 
age, the view presented in the morning was truly fearful and ap- 
palling. But new strength and courage seemed to come with the 
rising sun, and soon the sound of saw and hammer was heard in 
every direction. And, Phoenix-like, Mount Vernon began to rise 
from its ashes and put on more beautiful aspect than before. Work- 
men came from every direction and when useless sight-seers came 
around with their pessimistic wails, the workmen answered as did 
those who rebuilt the walls of Jerusalem. "We are engaged in a 
great work, so that we can not come down and confer with you." 
And so the work werit on, and is going on to this day. A spirit of 
enterprise was born in our people — right in the face of great dis- 
aster — which gave them glimpses of future possibilities never before 
dreamed of and that spirit resulted in the creation of the "King 
City" of Southern Illinois, with a population nearly four times as 
great as then and a business that bears no comparison with before 
the cyclone. In fact the terrible disaster developed all the good, 
strong characteristics of our true American citizens, and has dem- 
onstrated the stuff we are made of. 

Some of the papers of our homes and business men that went 
out with the cyclone, were found as far away as Xenia and Flora, 
in Clay county and between here and there. We recovered the 
G. A. R. banner hanging in a tree a mile or two out of town. Many 
homes were lifted, leaving the inmates on the floor unmolested. The 
water and mud were lifted out of several cisterns and wells. On the 
school-house grounds many grass straws were stuck into the bark 
of the trees and they could not be pulled out. Much stock was 
killed, by force and electricity. One cow was found dead with a 

222 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

ham of meat sticking in her head — the hock having entered her 
skull. We noticed an oak water barrel, which had been pierced by 
a stick as large as a baseball club, having been driven through a 
stave as if shot from a cannon. These and many other freaks were 
seen and knovsTi of by many of our people — all showing the un- 
known force that accompanies a real cyclone twister. May we 
never see another. 

It is safe to repeat that had it not been for this fearful calamity, 
this destroying beasom from the elements of Mount Vernon would 
not be today the city that it is- — with its many churches and schools, 
its humming industries and its ten thousand hustling inhabitants — 
all going to show what a real live industrious optimistic people can 
do in the face of seeming destruction and defeat. 



County Fairs — Reunions — Old Folks' Reunion — Pace Re- 
union — Soldiers' Reunions — etc. 

"Should auld acquaintance be forgot. 

And never brought to mind? 
Should auld acquaintance be forgot, 

In the days of auld lang syne?" 

The agricultural history of Jefferson county is but little more 
than a repetition of the history of other Southern Illinois counties. 
The area of the county is five hundred and seventy-six square 
miles, nearly all susceptible of cultivation. For the first forty years 
there was but little incentive to grow crops, for there was no mar- 
ket. Much of the surplus produce was hauled in wagons to Shaw- 
neetown or St. Louis, but now the markets of the world are at our 
very doors and we have only to so feed and tickle the soil so as to 
make it produce the greatest amount of saleable products. This, to- 
gether with that other pressing need of the times, the effort to make 
rural life attractive, is all that is needed to make life on the farm the 
most desirable life in the world. But we can not give a desertation 
on the beauties of farming here. We merely desire to refer to 
Farmers' Organizations, Old Peoples' Associations, etc. The old 
Jefferson County Agricultural Society, which was formed away 
back toward war times, was a very successful and popular one in 


224 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

its day. It was in good hands and was always operated for the 
interest and amusement of the people, besides being beneficial to the 
grain, vegetable and stock raisers. Of course, racing was a feature, 
but it was not the principal one, as is the case with many of the 
modern fair associations. They secured admirable grounds in the 
southeastern part of the city, with plenty of shade, wood and water, 
taking in the creek, the site of the old Short sawmill and the "swim- 
ming hole" where we boys used to have bushels of fun, and the hazel 
thickets, where the other fellows used to play "seven-up" and other 
things too numerous to mention. The annual fairs given by this 
old society were looked forward to with much anxiety, for they took 
the form of a grand social reunion with the people both at home and 
abroad. Indeed, those were halcyon days spent in the old fair 
grounds, both at the fairs and the other reunions that took place 
there. It is one of the great mistakes of the city that it did not se- 
cure those grounds for its own use before the same was laid off in 
lots and sold by piece-meal. It should have been made the Forest 
Park — the world's fair ground of Mount Vernon for all time to 
come, but it belonged to private parties and they got a chance to lot 
it and sell out to good advantage and away it went, leaving our city 
without any chance whatever to get a city park. Hindsight is some- 
times a good thing, but it can never be compared to good business 

Recently a new fair association has been formed by some of 
our enterprising young business men and some good fairs are being 
held on their grounds at the south extremity of the corporation, 
where they have the basis for very good fair grounds in the future, 
but how inviting and beautiful can only be told by the next histo- 
rian, for it will take years to get as much shade and conveniences as 
the old grounds afforded. The new society is paying especial at- 
tention to the improvement of the methods of farming and of the 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 225 

stock of the county and in this they are deserving of patronage. An- 
other thing they propose to do is to help conserve our natural re- 
sources in timber, or at least to help to restore the great waste of for- 
ests that has been going on so profligately in late years. They have 
planted trees that will in a few years afford grateful shade to pleas- 
ure seekers who shall resort to these grounds for recreation and 
amusement. And in this way, the new fair company will make them- 
selves benefactors. 

For many years an "Old Settlers' Association" was kept up 
and held its annual reunions and great enjoyment was gotten out of 
them by the older inhabitants, but many modern reunions came along 
and the old had to give way to the new — baseball, football and club 
reunions. For many years, James E. Fergerson, that old-fashioned 
Tennesseean, and James M. Pace, that plain Jeffersonian, kept the 
"Old Folks' Association" going, but they have both transfered their 
membership to the pioneer army corps on the other side and their 
mantel didn't seem to fall on willing souls like themselves, and the 
"Old Folks" are unrepresented, except as referred to by the present 

Horticulture has been greatly neglected by our land owners — 
much more so than simple agriculture. Fruit growing has been with 
our people, too much of the hap-hazard order. Very little attention 
has been given to breeding good fruit, to pruning, grafting, mulching 
and spraying; hence we do not raise the good fruit that we might 
and ought to raise. This is eminently a fruit section and if our fruit 
men do not raise good fruit it is their own fault. A few men here, 
like L. N. Beal, have had good success in the line of horticulture. 
Others may have and we are glad to notice renewed interest along 
this line. Just a week or two since, the Horticulture Society of 
South Illinois held a session here, which had the effect of reviving the 
subject of fruit growing and we hope it brings forth good fruit. The 


226 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

visitors had on exhibition some deUcious apples, both in name and 
quahty. Those bearing the name "Delicious" could not be excelled 
— even in the garden of Eden. 

A few years ago the descendants of Joel and Mary East Pace 
started what was intended to be an annual reunion and two or three 
very enjoyable meetings were held, but the later "meets" failed to 

At the last meeting, a full board of officers was chosen to have 
charge of future reunions of the Pace Reunion and about a hundred 
and fifty of the relationship were in attendance, eager for another 
"bout," but some of the officers have died and the others have 
"flunked" and so the next reunion has never been held. 

The Pace family is an old one in this county and in the nation. 
Joel Pace, Sr., was fourteen years old, and his wife twelve when the 
Declaration of Independence was made. The family record, copied 
as to Christian names and dates of birth from their old family Bible, 
is as follows: 

Joel Pace, Sr., born July 28, 1 762. 

Mary East Pace, born May 13, 1764. 

John M. Pace, born August 14, I 783. 

Frances Watson, born May 14, 1785. 

Jane Tyler (no living descendants), born August 5, 1787. 

Polly Atwood, born August 5, 1 789. 

Joseph and Joel Pace, born December I , I 791 . 

Spencer Pace, born May 8, 1 794. 

Lettia Jackson, born July 4, 1 796. 

Patsey Goodrich, born November 3, 1 798. 

Thomas E. Pace (never married), born February 26, 1801. 

William W. Pace, born February 23, 1803. 

Mily Baugh, born August 1 4, 1 806. 

It will be noticed from these figures that twelve children were 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 227 

born to them in twenty-three years to a day — the oldest and young- 
est child being born on August 1 4th, twenty-three years apart. 

Thus are old reunions giving way to the new and we old peo- 
ple gradually "lose out." There is no reasonable reason why this 
reunion and the Old Folks' Association might not have been kept 
up for all time as there seems no prospect of the material giving out. 

The Smith family in Spring Garden township and other family 
relationships in different parts of the county, who are not so badly 
thronged with other society events as are the people of Mount Ver- 
non, hold their annual reunions, and enjoy life. Here we have so 
many society fads, so many classes, casts, clubs, sets and functions, 
that we have not the time to have a general good time all together, 
as we used to have, before the "fads" came around. But such, we 
suppose, is life, in all up-to-date cities like Mount Vernon — whether 
it brings more happiness or not. 

The G. A. R. reunions are the only ones that don't become old 
and stale, or that don't lose their flavor, and even they are being 
brought into disrepute by the name "soldiers' reunion" being used by 
fakirs, boot-leggers and gamblers, in order to draw the people to 
their "slaughter of the innocents." The old soldiers are so disgusted 
with this species of "false pretenses" that they have quit attending 
these fetes, and they justly demand that these frauds cease using 
the name "soldier " as a drawing card. 

We have so many orders now that they almost monopolize the 
banquet and reunion business. One or more of these reunions take 
place each week, either by the Masons, the Knights of Pythias, 
Ben Hurs, Woodmen, Red Men, Pocahontas and other brother- 
hood or sisterhood orders, and these, together with the numerous 
family reunions, seem to block out the neighborhood, tovsmship and 
county reunions, that were in vogue some years ago. Another 
thing that ought not to be, is the disposition on the part of the "old- 

228 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

est inhabitants" to count themselves "back numbers" and abandon 
the field entirely to the youngsters. It is all right for the youngsters 
to claim seats at the first table and all that, but it is not good taste — 
in fact, it is absolutely wrong — to crowd the old people into the 
chimney corner and not allow them to have their say. And it is not 
right for the "old folks" to permit such treatment of themselves. 
They have earned the front seats and they ought to claim them. 

An Old Soldiers' Reunion of the right kind was held only last 
night and the local paper's account of it is correct. Here it is : 

Gen. C. W. Pavey and Mrs. Pavey left today for Houston, 
Texas, accompanied by their son, Eugene, with whom they will 
spend the winter. 

A farewell party was tendered General Pavey, Monday even- 
ing, by a detachment of his old soldier friends and the evening was 
one in which happenings occurred that endeared the host to the 
hearts of the guests more and more and words were spoken that 
made impressions that not even time can obliterate. Old memories 
were revived by the stories that were told and many of the hardships 
of '61 to '65 were told again; but the conditions of the dark days 
are now looked back upon by many who experienced the trials as 
experiences they could not be without, but do not care to partake in 
a repetition. 

General Pavey is one of the soldiers whose experiences were 
among the hardest, yet he tells them without the shadow of dread. 
He is one of the best known soldiers now living and his popularity 
does not stop at the boundaries of his home city, county or state, 
but is of national prominence. He has held many offices of public 
trust and is a man honored and respected by all. His last service 
for the government was in the department of justice, an office he was 
compelled to give up on account of declining health. 

Smaller and smaller each day become the ranks of the brave 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 229 

boys who wore the blue, and brighter and brighter do the gatherings, 
such as Monday night, become to the soldiers. They have lived to 
see war become a science instead of butchery, and while there may 
be other wars, there never will be a greater cause than the one in 
which they took part. 

The gathering of old comrades seemed to put new life in the 
veins of General Pavey and his eyes sparkled with delight. He ap- 
peared much better for having had his comrades with him on the eve 
of his departure and was touched by the many expressions for his 

But, after all, the reunion we all want to attend is the one that 
has no end.. When in that wondrous hour, that glorious day, the 
mists of earth shall roll away. And with vision bright, we shall 
cross the river and on into the land of the glorious Son, where there 
is no night. The pearly gates will open wide and we shall there be 
satisfied in heaven's pure light. There we will dwell with comrades 
gone before in grand reunions evermore. Till then — good night. 



Oldest Settlers — All Gone — Later Comers Fast Following 
Them — A New Generation Comes in as the old Goes out — Truth 
the Only Monument That Will Stand the Test of Ages. 

"We do not always know, dear Lord, 

The whys, nor when, nor where; 
But this we know, we can not drift 

Beyond your love and care." 

Among the first comers were Lewis and Frances Johnson. 
They had a daughter, Anna. About the same time came Ransom 
Moss. And it is said of Ransom and Anna that they moved from 
the same county in Virginia about the same time to the same place 
in Tennessee, then from that state to Jefferson county, Illinois, with- 
out becoming acquainted. They were also both the same age — born 
in 1 798 on the same day. Mr. Moss had been married and was the 
father of Lucillius C. Moss, who figured in the early history of 
Mount Vernon and died at an advanced age in Ashley a few years 
ago. Moss and Anna Johnson met and married — said to be the 
first marriage in Jefferson county — which marriage ceremony was 
performed by William Casey — ^wherein Zadok Casey said William 
announced that "marriage was ordained in the days of man's igno- 
rance." To Ransom and Anna were born eight children — five boys 
and three girls, the first being Thomas L., the father of Thaddeus 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 231 

C, W. D. and "Judge" and Mrs. George W. Smith, Mrs. J. L. 
Fergerson and Mrs. William Maxey; James F., who lived and died 
in Jersey county; William; John Riley, who married George W. 
Allen's daughter and they were the parents of Angus I., farmer and 
stock raiser of Shiloh township ; Norman H.. lawyer, of Mount Ver- 
non ; a daughter who married Doctor McAnnually, of Carbondale ; 
Lillie, who married a Mr. Neal, of Knoxville, Tennessee; and Dr. 
Harry Moss, of Albion, Illinois. Capt. John R. recently died at 
the home of Harry in Albion, and was buried at Oakwood cemetery 
near here. Then came Elizabeth, Amanda and Nancy, the latter 
of whom is the wife of James C. Maxey, of Mount Vernon — both 
being well advanced in age. 

Ransom Moss died in 1835. After the lapse of time his 
widow, Anna, married a Mr. Latham, from which union was born 
Samuel Latham, who served as postmaster of Mount Vernon in 
the seventies. Latham died, and Anna, or "Grandma Moss" as 
she was better known, lived a widow for fifty years, until she died 
in great peace in Mount Vernon in October, 1 890, aged ninety-two 
years and a half. Her descendants number about two hundred 
souls, running down to the fifth generation. She was mother, 
grandmother, great-grandmother and great-great-grandmother. For 
eighty years she was a consistent member of the Methodist church 
and lived a faithful Christian. 

"Life's labor done as sinks the day. 

Light from its load the spirit flies. 
While heaven and earth combine to say 

How blest the righteous when she dies." 

Judge J. R. Satterfield, who served the people so long and in 
so many offices, married Elizabeth Johnson in 1833, and they were 

232 wall's history of jefferson co.. ill. 

the parents of ten children: Ed V.; John N.; Mary E. ; Mrs. Pru- 
dence Fry; Mrs. Martha Cooper; Maud; James R. ; William R. ; 
Rebecca and Laura. They are all gone, except Mrs. Cooper and 
Laura. At an advanced age he was buried at Old Union twenty 
years ago and his aged wife a few years later. 

Thomas H. Hobbs married a Miss Holtsclaw in 1843 and 
Henry Hobbs, the machinist who died recently, was their son. The 
wife died and Mr. Hobbs took Ellen Guthrie to wife and Charles 
A. ; Alva L. ; Edward and Homer were their children. Mr. Hobbs 
was well known as an enterprising citizen, a Republican. Odd Fel- 
low and a Methodist. 

S. T. Stratton was a later comer, but a valuable citizen — full 
of business enterprise — filled well his mission and died full of years 
and honor. His children : R. L. ; Charles T. ; A. M. ; Mrs. A. 
C. Johnson ; Mrs. R. F. Pace ; Rynd, the hardware man ; and Miss 
Anna. David and Mrs. Dr. Johnson and R. L. are the only ones 

J. E. Fergerson came from Tennessee in the fifties, farmed and 
merchandised successfully, until age stopped him. He was father 
of James, John L. and Frank by his Tennessee wife. He married 
a Mrs. Westcott and farmed on the Centralia road for a while. His 
wife died and he came to town, formed a partnership with Stratton 
and they together made things lively for a season. He then married 
Rev. G. W. Allen's girl, Sarah, and reared another family: Mrs. 
John Mahaffy; Mrs. Deeds, of Nashville, Tennessee; Mrs. Hill 
Williams (dead) ; Mrs. Stuckey and Mrs. Scott, being his daugh- 
ters, with two girls and one boy dead. His widow is still with us. 
He was a way-back Methodist. 

Sam Gibson married a Newby and raised a family consisting 
of four boys and three girls — all useful people in the communities in 
which they live. Uncle Sam is still enjoying life, a good citizen and 
a Christian. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL, 233 

The names of the "first families," such as the Tuntstalls, Hicks, 
Reardens, Nortons, Snodgrasses, Parsons, Upshaws, Crabtrees, 
Adams, Dickens, Southwards, Porters, Eastes, Fosters, Mays and 
others, who figured in the early years of the town, have entirely dis- 
appeared, with not even a descendant to speak for them. But they 
performed their part and passed on. 

Jarvis Pierce went to Harrisburg and was a "court-house fix- 
ture" there till he died. James, one of his boys, was elected County 
Clerk there and served many years. David Hobbs and Aaron 
Yearwood came in 1826. Robert Breeze and Joseph McMeens 
settled up towards Jordan's Prairie, 1827. Enoch Holtsclaw and 
Sam Cummins came in 1828; also the Bullocks, Billington Taylor, 
Caleb Barr, Elisha Meyers, Peter Owen, William Finch, Thomas 
Nichols. But it is impossible to keep this up. This brings us up to 

The Barretts came in the thirties. The last one of them is 
dead, except Cyrus A. He is in Ashley, totally blind, but draws a 
full pension. 

The Tromleys are all gone — George A. lives at Fairfield and 
Lawrence and Theodore are still in the printing business at Galena, 
Missouri. Theodore has just been elected to the Legislature. 

All the men of the Ham National Bank — Ham Taylor, Grant 
Holland, Noah Johnston — are gone. Mrs. Ham is still living 
with her two sons, Sidney and Grant, and her daughter, Mrs. Mar- 
tha Pavey, Evans, of the other bank, is gone, and absenteeism is the 
rule rather than the exception. 

The Warrens, the Scanks, the Millers, the Klines, of the early 
day are all gone. The Frizzells died with the cholera in 1 849 and 
a row of tombstones mark their graves in Old Union. In fact, 
nearly all the good people of "our day" seem to have left us to 
"fight it out," that is, with the exception of a few chums, like the 

234 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

Baugh boys, Dick Lyon, Rynd Stratton, and perhaps a few more 
of about our age. 

Roda Allen, grandfather to Hibe and Jack Allen, was the 
first one to be buried at Union graveyard, in 1820. The spot is 
marked by a neat monument erected by his grandson. Rev. S. K. 
Allen. The gravestones in Union, Salem, Pleasant Grove, Hope- 
well, Sursa, Bethel and even Oakwood cemeteries, contain several 
names not now claimed by any living persons in this community. 

All the old Caseys are dead,W. Barger, son of Uncle Tommy, 
being the oldest one we know of. He still lives in Mount Vernon 
and pursues the even tenor of his way — just as he always did. He 
can tell you all about the Caseys. 

The old Maxeys, too, are gone, Capt. S. T. and James C. 
being the oldest ones left. They are still hale, hearty and useful 

The old Johnsons are also missing. Washington S., son of 
"Uncle Jackey," Abraham C, son of "Uncle Jimmy," and Leander 
C, son of John T., being the only old "seedlings" left, and there 
is multiplying evidence that we are passing away — we are living in 
another generation. Wesley Johnson's widow is still living, quite 
aged. Her children are: Thomas and Harry, Florence, Emma 
and Lucy, at home, Sallie Coberly, married. Fletcher's widow is 
also still living and her children are: Mrs. Mary Moyer, Eva, 
(deceased). Susie and Mattie, and Willie, dead. They are some 
of our best people. 

The George Mills family has been missing for years, but a 
couple of the boys — now old men — are farming in Dodds township. 

"Uncle Cannon" Maxey's son, Tom, died last year at an ad- 
vanced age. 

Doctor Piercy, Claib Harper and the old stock of Shiloh have 
given place to new blood. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 235 

The Laceys, except Bob's father, A. T., who still lives at a 
great age, have passed on before. 

And even those who came here in the forties, after the writer 
did, have been called "old settlers" and passed off the stage of 
action. The Greens, the Fergersons, the Strattans, the Tolles, the 
Herdmans, the Hobbs, the Gibsons. 

Doctor Gray and his tribe are all gone ; so with the Dan Balt- 
zel family, and the Thorn family, and the Doctor Short tribe, and 
largely so with the Newby people. The Bowmans are all gone; 
the Paces have largely decreased in numbers ; the Hinmans are out 
but Bob and children ; the Bennetts are unknown to this generation, 
the Melchers are absent; the Ridgways are gone; the well known 
fist fighters who used to come to town and whom everybody knew, 
are doing the pioneers stunt in some other unexplored country; the 
Andersons, prominent as they were, are no more seen upon our 
streets ; Noah Johnston has but one representative left — his son, Ed. 
And even Zadok Casey, the noblest Roman, nay, the noblest Amer- 
ican of them all, has but one representative left among us, and he a 
grandson, Sam Casey. 

The great fire that burned out the Phoenix Block, occurred 
March 17, 1868. C. L. Hayes lost twelve hundred dollars in his 
printing outfit, but was soon on his feet with another press and re- 
sumed the publication of the Free Press. 

Judge Satterfield died in 1887, his oldest son, E. V., in 1898, 
and John N. a few years before. 

A. M. Grant died in 1889, his wife in 1883. 

George H. Varnell died in 1889. His wife is still living, 
quite old and an invalid. The children are: George, John and 
Tiney, and Mrs. Tate. 

John S. Bogan died in 1892. His wife is still living, as also 
his sons, William and Frank, and daughter, Mrs. Marsh Goodale. 
Mrs. W. T. Goodrich, and Mrs. N. C. Pace, widow. 

236 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

James B. ToUe came in 1843 and was the first to put up a 
modern mill near town. His children were: Lewis, in St. Louis; 
Charles, Bert, Mary, deceased; and Alice, here. Brother ToUe 
was a thorough three-link man and the links that suited him best 
were the Methodist church, the Republican party and the Odd 

Edward McAtee came in early, married W. B. Thorn's 
daughter, and they were the parents of James W., Theodore and 
Charles A., and the McAtee girls. 

Pollock, Varnell, Tanner, and others, who have done nobly, 
all of them have hoed out their row and gone home, and in their 
places we behold an entire new set of bread winners, battling for the 
bread and meat that perisheth — just as the old settlers did during 
their sojourn here. 

A fact — and it is a fact — worth mentioning here, is this : There 
is not a man now in sight that was in business here in 1 842 when the 
writer first came to Mount Vernon — all gone. James M. Pace was 
the last to go and he was then only a clerk in his father's store. We 
believe H. T. Pace's youngest son, A. N., is still living in Florida, 
but his grandson, William T., and his sister, Mrs. Dr. Plummer, 
are the only representatives of the H. T. Pace family here. Another 
fact is that there is not a house in sight in the limits of Mount Ver- 
non that was a house then, except the old Methodist church, which 
is now being used as a lumber yard office on Eleventh street and the 
part of the old H. T. Pace store house, being torn down, now on 
Johnson alley, having been used as a carpenter shop. So the reader 
can readily see the importance of renewmg their Jefferson county 
history — at least every twenty-five years. 

We have just been presented with a copy of the "Unionist," 
published by the writer in Mount Vernon in November, 1863, and 
the list of business men in town then were: 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 237 

Merchants — J. Pace & Son, corner of Main and Union; H. 
T. Pace, S. W. corner Main and Union; R. W. Lyon, N. E. 
corner Bunyan and Union; T. H. Hobbs & Co., S. E. corner Union 
and Bunyan; Stratton & Fergerson, N. E. corner Bunyan and 
Washington; J. F. Watson, Main, below Washington and Union; 
D. Baltzel & Son, Main, corner Casey. Johnson & Ham, S. W. 
corner Main and Casey. 

Groceries — W. D. Watson, Union, north of Main; E. J. 
Winton, Main, below Union and Washington ; John Kleine, Main, 
one door west of J. F. Watson. 

Clothing — M. Ehrman, Main, and H. W. Seimer, merchant 

Saddlery and Harness — J. C. Dawson, D. C. Warren, W. B. 

Boots and Shoes — John Hampel, William Fancher, J. R. 

Wagons and Carriages — Ira G. Carpenter, R. C. Jarrell. 

Blacksmithing — W. H. Herdman, Hardin Davisson. 

Alas! Where are they now? 

In this paper were the returns of an election held for County 
School Commissioners. The writer had been put on the Union ticket 
to lead the "forlorn hope," knowing that there would be no chance 
of election. The Democratic majority against him was six hundred 
and twenty-one, whereas the majority against the Union candidate 
for Congress at same election was eleven hundred and twenty-one. 

Rev. W. T. Williams, father of John D. and William T., 
was then pastor of the Christian, or Campbellite, church, and Rev. 
Gordon pastor of the Presbyterian church. 

Dr. E. E. Welborn was keeping drug store where the Grand 
Hotel now stands and Ed Noble had just quit the tinner's business 
to go to Centralia and become landlord of the Merritt hotel. 

238 wall's history of jefferson cc, ill. 

The Collins are all gone but John and family. His cheerful 
"get up" can still be heard out among the teams. His mother. Lydia 
Watson Collins, is living with her other son, Ogie, at Arthur. 

The colored contingent, Caesar and Maria, Aaron and even 
"Old Hodge," over the creek, are all gone, but others have come in 
their places. 

The fellows who used to forage and get chickens for Maria 
to "burgoo" are also missing. We remember one night the other 
fellows left Asa Watson to help Maria get up the supper while they 
went out and got the chickens. When they came in with them, 
Asa saw in a moment they had taken them from his own roost. Asa 
"got even" with them at supper, but we will have to whisper in your 
ears just how he did it. 

And so it will be seen that we are all going somewhere else — 
and it is important to each individual to know where. Happily we 
need not be left in the dark, for "we know Him" in whom we have 
trusted, and that hath prepared mansions of joy and rest for us, for, 
spiritually speaking, we can all exclaim with one of old 

"Thou reasonest well. 

It must be so ; 
Else whence these pleasing hopes. 

These fond desires — 
This longing after immortality?" 

or if we appeal to nature, we find that 

Back of the bread, the grinding mill. 
Back of the mill, the reaper's task; 
Back of this, the Father's will 
And blessings more than we can ask. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 239 

Back of honest toil, the rain and sun. 
Back of these, the productive sod ; 
And back of all our work — when done — 
We come — we come — to God. 

There is absolutely nowhere else to go — except to the devil — and 
we hope that no reader of Wall's Jefferson County History will 
dare do that. 



Post-Office — Its History — and Others. Telegraphs, Tele- 
phones, etc. Other Speedy Modes of Communication. 

Here comes Uncle Sam, 
Who acknowledges no fetters; 
His knapsack fully crammed 
With letters, letters, letters. 

No institution, governmental or otherwise, comes near touch- 
ing all the people in everyday life for the year round than does the 
post-office and the business transacted by the authorized agent of 
"Uncle Sam." The post-office is strictly a business institution, the 
business barometer of every city, town and village, readily showing 
the rise and fall of prosperity. If the business of the post-office 
shows a healthy increase there is increasing prosperity in the city or 
town. If on the contrary the receipts of post-office show a decrease, 
the prosperity of the place is tending in the same direction. 

Notwithstanding this fact, however, each town and city has 
scores of people, some of them in business, who do not seem to realize 
that they might materially aid the business of the post-office by a 
little forethough in the transaction of their everyday business. Many 
instead of dispatching whatever they may desire to send abroad 
through the mails, rush off to the express office and pay extra prices 
to foreign trust companies for the services, and this too, while the 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 241 

post-office is the local institution of the people themselves — instituted 
by the government for the people in their respective localities, and 
operated by their own people for their own benefit. For it is a well 
known fact that the only place that the government comes in contact 
with the people, when they are brought to realize its beneficence, is 
through their post-office, where it provides for them fast mails, cheap 
rates, free delivery and the most accommodating public servants in 
the country, aside from securing the best and cheapest modes of 
sending and receiving money and other valuable articles. Every 
man, woman and child should know that they can send through the 
mails most any instrument of manuscript safer and cheaper than they 
can send same by an express company, which has no interest in the 
city except its one representative. As to merchandise, the mails also 
afford cheaper and quicker delivery. This is especially true as to 
other classes of goods, such as papers, books, etc. 

As showing the demonstration of these facts, we begin away 
back at the time Mount Vernon was laid off. At first the pioneers 
had no post-office and no means of communication with or receiving 
information from the outside world. Imagine if you can what the 
town would be today were it in the same condition. Of course, after 
a few years, the people felt the need of a post-office and mail facili- 
ties and a post-office was finally ordained, and a mail route estab- 
lished to run from Shawneetown to Alton, and later, one from Me- 
tropolis to Salem, and of course Mount Vernon got the benefit of 
these routes, but the mail amounted to but little for several years. 
It was difficult to get anybody to act as postmaster for there was 
responsibility and no pay. It is said while Uncle Joel Pace held 
about all the county offices he also had to discharge the duties of 
postmaster. As in all new villages some one in other business was 
usually pressed into the service as postmaster. After passing the 
task around for some time, Downing Baugh (father of J. V. and 


242 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

J. W.) assumed the duties of postmaster. A little later, the plum 
was transfered to Noah Johnston, who after operating it a while in- 
stalled Daniel Kenney, a peculiar character who happened along as 
a tramp tailor, but a prominent Mason, and allowed him the sal- 
ary for the service. Some of the older inhabitants will remember 
old man Kenney, who spit and sputtered when he didn't want to 
be disturbed, and how he used to call letters over to the crowd after 
the tri-weekly and daily stage came in, and how he seemed to think 
everybody should be there to claim their letters, without disturbing 
him in the interim. Without contest the old man was allowed to 
conduct the office until after President Lincoln was inaugarated in 
1861. The old man Kenney had the office in a little shack near 
the new Presbyterian church. The old man died soon after giving 
up the office and was buried by the Masons. 

Amos B. Barrett was appointed postmaster by President Lin- 
coln and he located the office on Main street about the middle of 
what is now Pace block. The war came on and Barrett made him- 
self quite popular as the soldier's friend in sending and receiving let- 
ters to and from the front. Barrett, however, did not hold up so 
well, after the war — he changed his politics and religion and finally 
died in Arkansas poor and friendless. Under Andrew Johnson, 
Will Baugh was appointed postmaster and he installed J. V. to act, 
which he did very satisfactorily until President Grant appointed 
S. K. Latham, who moved the office to a grocery store on the north 
side and served twelve years; Barrett again got into the office as 
helper. After Latham, came Robert Hinman, who served two 
terms as postmaster in an acceptable manner. He had the office 
in the Johnson block where the Boston store now is. When Cleve- 
land was elected Robert F. Pace was appointed postmaster and 
was assisted by his sister. Miss Gussie Pace. He removed the office 
to the Bond block on Broadway, where it was considerably shook 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 243 

up by the cyclone in February, 1888. He was followed by the 
writer, John A. Wall, who moved the office into the Harrison block, 
south side of the square. He was assisted by Ed Stratton, Al Wall, 
Vesta Polk, and Bessie Wall and May Miller. During his in- 
cumbency he weekly handled the Progressive Farmer, nearly fifty 
thousand copies, which afforded the most work for the least pay 
ever recorded in the office — dividing and sending out a stake-wagon 
load of papers each week to different states, largely to single sub- 
scribers. He served nearly five years and brought the office up to 
a paymg basis. 

Mr. Wall was succeeded by Allan C. Tanner, who removed 
the office to the room now occupied by Buckham's drug store. Wall 
continued with him until 1895, when he quit, was elected assessor 
and assessed Mount Vernon township. In 1897, Samuel H. Wat- 
son was appointed to succeed Tanner. At this time the office was 
changed from third to second class and Watson took hold of it de- 
termined to make it first-class, as to the service performed. He se- 
cured a lease on the building now occupied, from Doctor and Albert 
Watson, making the government responsible for all charges for rent, 
lights, fuel, etc. John A. Wall again came in as assistant postmas- 
ter, and at various times during this administration the office had as 
clerks: Omer Pace, Ray Hitchcock, Walter Gibson, James 
Mitchell, Wainwright Davis, J. W. Maddox, Harry Rice, Mary 
Malton and Nellie Woodworth, all good helpers, the only draw- 
backs being that no sooner was the young clerk installed than he 
would get married, and have to divide his attention somewhat be- 
tween the mails and the females. Four were thus married in four 
years. Miss Mary Malton was the only one saved from the matri- 
monial wreck, she having served from 1 900 until now, and is counted 
one of the best post-office experts in the business and is head of the 
civil service examinations. 

244 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

Under postmaster Watson, both city and rural delivery were 
established, not only as to Mount Vernon, but as to the other parts 
of the county as well. Through his untiring efforts he had twenty- 
seven rural routes established, traversing nearly every part of the 
county, making Mount Vernon the starting point for ten of these 
routes. It would be interesting to give some statistics showing that 
at no period of the office's history has there been such a boom as 
under the never waning energy and business determination of post- 
master Watson. He brought the income of the office up from nine 
thousand dollars per annum to sixteen thousand dollars, and he left 
the service with the assurance from the department that the record 
of the Mount Vernon post-office was the best in the state excepting 
one. But while the civil service law and the rule of the department 
both seemed to insure a continuance of the faithful and eminently 
useful administration of Capt. S. H. Watson and his assistants, un- 
dersirable political methods decreed that a good record and the en- 
forcement of the civil service rules in the Mount Vernon post-office 
must not get in the way of paying political debts or fulfilling the 
condition of political trades and swaps, so Watson was let out and 
G. Gale Gilbert let in. 


G. Gale Gilbert, postmaster; Ray W. Hitchcock, assistant 

Clerks— Miss Nellie Woodworth, Miss Mary Malton, Robert 
L. Lacey, Charles N. Moss, Fred F. Marlow, Hal D. Goodale. 

City Carriers — Oscar O. Stitch, Chester T. Taylor, Arthur O. 
Cummings, Dan G. Melton, Ralph McBrian, John E. Ore. 

Rural Carriers — Henry B. Setzkorn, Lambert O. Thompson, 
Walter H. Newton, John H. Hestwood, James N. Stockard, 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 245 

George W. Smith, Henry G. Melton, John T. Marteeny, Abram 
Metcalf, Lorenzo H. Lively. 

Total receipts for sale of stamps, stamp paper, etc., for year 
ending June 30, 1908— $1 7,165.12. 

Total amount of money orders issued and fees on same for 
same year — $47,337.51. 

Total amount of money orders paid for the year — $57,839.44. 

So it will be seen that the trend of the Mount Vernon post- 
office is continuously onward and upward. The carrier's force is the 
same as under the former administration. The office clerks force 
is different except as to the lady clerks. Misses Malton and Wood- 

The post-office at other towns in the county have had some of 
the same experiences as Mount Veriion. Dix, Woodlawn, Walton- 
ville, Bonnie, Ina, Belle Rive, Opdyke, Bluford, Marlow and Em- 
merson City, all have well conducted post-offices, most of them oper- 
ating rural routes. Most of the cross roads post-offices have given 
away to those rural routes, which serve all the people better than did 
the offices. The one thing needed to perfect this mail service in 
Jefferson county, is good roads, so that none of the routes may he 
held up in bad weather. It was part of the plan on the part of the 
government to require townships to keep their roads in order as a 
return for free mail delivery, but we regret to say that this is not 
being carried out. With the government giving this free mail deliv- 
ery at great expense to the people, business men, farmers and others 
certainly ought to be willing to make an effort to make good roads, 
thus adding to their own conveniences as well as to the price of their 
farms, and the good opinion not only of the Jefferson county his- 
torian, but of all visitors to the county. 

The annual report of the pastmaster general, just out, discloses 
a deficit of sixteen million nine hundred and ten thousand, two hun- 

246 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

dred and seventy-eight dollars, the largest in the history of the de- 
partment. The chief cause of the deficit is the increase of the rural 
free delivery system, which cost thirty-four million, three hundred 
and sixty-one thousand, four hundred and sixty-three dollars. The 
postmaster general recommends now a parcel post addition to the 
rural delivery, believing that it would be not only of great benefit 
to the farmers, but would earn millions for the postal service. Fur- 
thermore, it is urged that such a service would help the small local 
stores. Says Meyer: "Were the post-office department a modern 
business corporation, its board of directors would not hesitate forty- 
eight hours to utilize the present machinery and establish a limited 
local parcel post on rural routes." A two-cent rate is now in oper- 
ation between the United States and both England and Germany, 
and the demand for cheaper postage has certainly gone to the limit. 
Better let the rate of postage rest and strain every nerve to bring it 
up to paying basis, the business of the department. Nobody has a 
right to complain of a two-cent postage rate, especially in view of 
the facilities and accommodations afforded by the government. The 
railroads and improved steamships have made mails possible and 
cheap everywhere, and the mails in turn have wiped out state lines 
and brought the national lion and lamb to the point of lying down 
together. The mail is the great civilizer. It has been and is the 
mother of commerce. It will one day sheath the sword and spike the 


"We've sparks from the wires by hand. 

Both electric and dumb. 
And thoughts o'er sea and land. 

Wonder what else will come." 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 247 

The telegraph came with the railroads and held full sway until 
the telephones came along and divided time with them. The roads 
are now using both the telegraph and the telephone in their busi- 
ness. The Western Union Telegraph Company have an up-town 
office with Joseph Medders in charge; they also have a machine in 
the Car Manufacturing Company's office, as also the telephone. 
The Bell Telephone Company has their system in full sway in 
Mount Vernon, and seem to render good service. We also have 
several independent lines extending through the rural districts. So 
in the matter of receiving or sending news we are up-to-date. To 
appreciate our condition, in this respect, we need only contrast the 
recent election with those held in the early settlement of the county, 
when it took two months to learn the result of a Presidential election. 
Now we can know by midnight of the day of election, just what 
has occurred. Yes, indeed, we are living in a fast age. Away back 
in 1 848, when Timothy Condit used to take and read the only daily 
paper that came to Mount Vernon, we were deeply interested one 
day in hearing what purported to be a dispatch from Queen Victoria 
to President Buchanan, said to have been sent over the first submarine 
cable laid in the waters of the Atlantic, which would permit us to 
hear the news from Europe in a few minutes, whereas before it took 
about a month. We confess we had some doubts about the authen- 
ticity of the dispatch and when in a few days we learned that the 
cable had parted, we were sure it was a mistake. But it was not, 
and now we have submarine cables in full operation between all 
countries of the world, and the daily papers of today tell us the 
world's happenings of yesterday — wonderful, of course. 

But the greatest marvel yet, is the wireless system of hearing 
from ships out on the ocean and from the other side of the ocean, as 
well as from different parts of the earth, thus doing away with the 
great expense of putting up poles and wires. Can this be so? The 

248 wall's history of jefferson cc, ill. 

answer is, it is so. We confess that we can not understand these 
things only on the theory that "there is nothing new under the sun." 
Evidently this is true so far as creation is concerned ; for everything 
we see, know or hear, was created and pronounced good, long be- 
fore our feeble intellects were crystallized enough to attempt to 
grasp them. If we understand even the theory of wireless telegraphy, 
it requires two instruments exactly attuned to each other having the 
capacity of both sending and receiving messages, and no other in- 
strument in the world except the attuned ones can even receive or 
know anything about the messages sent. Like throwing a pebble on 
the lake, its waves go out in every direction and are never broken 
until they strike the further shore or some intervening object. So 
with these wireless messages. As mysterious as all this seems, the 
idea, the principle, the fact, is not new. 

But even while we write of this we read in the paper of today 
of a collision at sea of two big steam liners away out in the ocean 
in the fog and darkness in which one or both is badly crippled with 
danger of going to the bottom. The account says: It is the first 
time the wireless has demonstrated its reliability and usefulness in 
the case of disasters at sea. Through the waste of fog she called 

for help — the "C. Q. D." of the wireless code and the little 

sound waves went north and east and south, overhauling the hurry- 
nig liners a hundred miles and more away and wheeling them to her 
aid. There has been nothing like it in marine history, this drama 
of the wireless, the thrilling story that leaped through the darkness 
and the fog before the sun lit up the sea; the tale that was told in 
dots and dashes, in short, curt, frightening syllables; not a letter 
waster, not a word squandered. In short, four hours, perhaps, after 
the Republic was smitten way out in the Atlantic the world knew 
that no lives were lost, by means of wireless telegraphy. And written 
between every such message for the imagination to seize upon and 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 249 

make clear were volumes as thrilling as any story of Russell's or 
Maryatt's or Connelly's. And thus God is using the brain of creat- 
ure man to bring out and develope the saving forces he created when 
he created man and endowed him with intellect, that he might know 
the "secret of the Lord " both as to material and spiritual life. 

When the great Light of the world, the bright and morning 
Star, the Alpha and Omega, the great Redeemer of mankind, over 
nineteen hundred years ago, personally reiterated the words of life 
(which had been prophesied centuries before), and sent them forth 
on the waves of time, across oceans, seas and contments, addressed 
to every living soul, promising that they should not return unto Him 
void, this air wave system was then inaugurated and the wonder is 
that the slow brain of man has not long since appropriated it to his 
own use. These wonderful words of life are constantly flowmg to 
all people in all lands and on all waters like the waves caused by 
casting the pebble into the ocean, but to be received effectively and 
be productive of good fruits, the hearts of men must be attuned to 
their melody, their song of Salvation — just like the sending and re- 
ceiving of messages by wireless telegraphy. Otherwise it would 
be better for the individual had the words never been spoken. 
For he that heareth the words of truth and salvation and be- 
lieveth not is condemned already. So after all. these mar- 
velous things, inventions so called, are simply the working out of the 
great Creator's plans for the enlightenment and betterment of the con- 
dition of mankind, and bring them to a knowledge of the truth as it 
is in the great Redeemer of the human race. God is the creator, man 
is the instrument and agent to bring these things to pass and to weave 
them into forms of usefulness; and man's brains the models and his 
hands the workshop, from which the finished product must be turned 
out. His will is the motive power, both as to earthly success and 
everlasting greatness in the world to come. Then, there is the tele- 
phone ; that is only a divine revelation reduced to practical use. The 

250 wall's history of jefferson co.. ill. 

thought is brought out in the child's song, where it says, "Hello 
Central, Give Me Heaven, for My Mamma's There." Prayer is the 
telephone by which we talk to our Heavenly Father and our loved 
ones there and each soul has a separate line of his own with no side- 
lines "butting in," and disturbing the sacredness of our conversation. 
The time has come when anything that interfers with travel or traf- 
fic is a bar to progress. In the early days of which we have been 
writing the pack-saddler men fought against the advent of wagons. 
They said it would ruin their pack-saddle industry ; then the wagon 
men fought the stage coach, on the theory that it would faciliate 
traffic and throw the wagon out of business, the stage coach then 
battled against the coming of the railroads, because steam cars would 
out-law the stage coach ; but each in turn were forced to give way. 
The horse car men fought the trolley car, claiming that they would 
put two million horses out of commission, and horse-breeders would 
starve. The trolley came and yet more horses are raised, at better 
prices than before. The horse interests are fighting the bicycle and 
automobile and will in due season be turned down and still the new 
methods are humming their way to the front, and not only in the 
matter of travel and traffic but in the line of communication and 
general intelligence. When we want to know anythmg we want to 
know it without delay, hence the general use of the telephones and 
telegraph. Not satisfied with the world's news of yesterday spread 
before us at the breakfast table, we want to know all the neighbor- 
hood news of today, hence we have our telephones and our local 
dailies. All this brings to mind that ninety years ago Illinois was 
admitted into the Union and at the time had less than five thousand 
inhabitants, less than half what Mount Vernon has today, that one 
year later, Jefferson county was established with only a few hun- 
dred people within its borders, whereas, today it has over thirty-five 
thousand inhabitants and perhaps the next twenty years will add 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 251 

more to the material prosperity of the county than have the past 
ninety years. We hand these facts and predictions over to the next 
historian, with the expectation that he will do his whole duty as we 
have tried to do ours, that is, tell the truth — let the chips fall where 
they may. He is at liberty to make this job easy by appropriating 
the facts and figures he may find herein, and which has cost us much 
weariness of mmd and body to accumulate. 

"We are living, we are moving 

In a grand and awful time. 
While the brains of men are proving 

That to be living is sublime." 

Truly, what wonderful beings we are, and what wonderful 
possibilities we are blessed with, if only we will open our eyes and 
minds and see for ourselves. These wonderful facts and the many 
others that present themselves to the human mind, ought to bring 
men and women into the realm of eternal love, where 

Life deems herself so lengthy. Love so brief. 
She trembleth at the falling of the leaf. 

"Dear Love, did I but choose thee 

To cherish and to lose thee? 
Must the dread Reaper bind thee in his sheaf?" 
"Fear not," quoth he, "for thus the Scripture saith. 
All-conquering Love in strength surpasseth Death. 

Love's empire hath no bounds, Love's sea no shore. 
I am thyself, dear Life, I can not leave thee. 
Nor can the King of Terrors e'er bereave thee. 
For Love and Life are one, for evermore." 

252 wall's history of jefferson cc, ill. 

It will be seen, that in writing this history, we have had more 
regard for the fact, the truth, than we have had for rhetoric or 
spread-eagle. Truth is the basis of every other virtue. Great is 
truth and stronger than all things. All the earth trembles at it, and 
with it is no unrighteous thing. In endureth forever and is always 
strong. With truth there is no excepting of persons or reward ; but 
it doeth the things that are just and refraineth from the wicked and 
unjust things. 

Truth is the strength, kingdom, power and majesty of all ages. 

Blessed forever be the truth. 



Safe Banks with Bank Safes of the Most Approved Patterns. 
Stocks and Bonds, Bonds and Stocks, Keep your Funds Under 
Locks. Ham National Bank — Capital Practically Unlimited. 

In 1 869, the first bank was opened in Mount Vernon by Car- 
lin. Cross & Company. Jefferson county had long felt the need 
of a banking institution and there was a feeling of rejoicing when 
Messrs. Carlin, Cross & Company opened the first bank here in 
1869. They did a good business here, but having large interests 
elsewhere they expressed a desire to sell out their banking interests 
here. So a company of local capitalists, Noah Johnston, Jeremiah 
Taylor, J. J. Fitzgerrell, Thomas G. Holland, and C. D. Ham 
bought the interests of the Carlin, Cross Company and organized 
the Mount Vernon National Bank, with Noah Johnston as presi- 
dent and C. D. Ham as cashier. After a few years, the national 
part of the organization dropped out with the death of part of the 
organizers, and in 1 880 the bank was known as the Mount Vernon 
Bank of C. D. Ham & Company, and as siich was operated till 
1897, when it was again chartered as the Ham National Bank of 
Mount Vernon, and although Ham has been dead several years it 
still is operated under that name, and is considered one of the safest 
banks in the state. All the original incorporators of the bank have 
closed their accounts and passed over "the divide," the bank is still 
above par with the business world, and no need of having bank quo- 

254 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

tations as we used to have to know whether the Ham National is 
all right or not. That goes without saying. At present it is officered 
as follows: Albert Watson, president; S. B. Ham, vice-president; 
Louis Pavey, cashier ; C. A. Keller and Earl Hinman, clerks. The 
bank has been located in the basement of the Odd Fellows hall, 
corner of Main and Tenth streets and is an institution of which 
Mount Vernon is justly proud. The private banks at Ina, Ewing, 
and Ashley have the same president as the Ham National. 

Noah Johnston, J. J. Fitzgerrell, and Thomas G. Holland 
were business men and capitalists of the county. Jeremiah Taylor 
came to the county in the early fifties as a traveling ambrotype maker 
and took pictures in the old court-house. Soon after he married 
the widow of James Ham, of Ham's Grove, and took charge of her 
extensive farming and store and with the help of the boys, C. D. 
and O. M. D., who knew no father but Uncle Jerry, succeeded in 
making money. Father Taylor and C. D. Ham coming to town they 
engaged in merchandising and also made money, after which they 
joined capital with the men spoken of above and purchased the Car- 
lin Cross institution, from which has evolved the Ham National 
Bank. Mrs. Anna Ham and sons are still stockholders in this bank. 



The Jefferson State Bank, of Mount Vernon, Illinois, was 
organized November 20, 1905, with a capital of fifty thousand 
dollars; William H. Green, president; Dr. J. H. Newton, vice- 
president; J. W. Gibson, cashier; V. E. Richardson, assistant 

Directors — C. H. Bumpus, William H. Green, Earl Green, 
J. W. Gibson, Andy Hall, C. W. Harriss, J. F. Mahaffy. L. C. 
Morgan, J. H. Newton. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 255 

This bank is managed in a careful, conservative and business- 
like manner and while it is the youngest institution of its kind in the 
county, yet it is one of the safest, and looks forward in the near fu- 
ture when, by reason of its many advantages and through the court- 
esy of its officers and directors, it will be known as one of the largest. 

The state of Illinois has its banks under close supervision and 
requires the fullest compliance with the stringent laws enacted for 
the protection of the depositors and its departments are in constant 
and close touch at all times with the business of the state bank. Under 
such careful supervision the rights of the depositors are fully pro- 

With such officers and directors and with the many advantages 
offered by a state bank, we predict a prosperous future for the Jef- 
ferson State Bank. 


A company of prominent citizens, John R. Allen, A. C. John- 
son, D. H. Warren, R. J. Bond, W. C. Arthurs, I. G. Gee Morris 
Emmerson, L. L. Emmerson and F. E. Patton, who became the di- 
rectors with others, purchased the Evans & Gee Banking Company 
and organized the Third National Bank, an institution of which 
Mount Vernon is justly proud. John R. Allen was chosen presi- 
dent; A. C. Johnson, vice-president; L. L. Emmerson, cashier; F. 
E. Patton, assistant cashier, and Charles H. Patton, attorney. It 
was organized with a capital stock of fifty thousand dollars and be- 
gan business February 4, 1902. 

In 1903, this Banking Company purchased the Harvey T. 
Pace corner, removed the "old land marks" and erected the present 
magnificent three-story building, in the first floor of which the Third 
National Bank makes its home, with all the modern improvements 
of banking. The building is an ornament to the city, the bank oc- 

256 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

cupying the entire first floor, except an office in the west end occu- 
pied by the Electric, Light, Gas, Heat & Water Company. The 
second and third stories contain twenty handsome offices, the whole 
outfit being lighted, heated and watered from the city light, heat 
and water plants. It is by far the most prominent and commodious 
business house in the city, and is continuously and fully occupied 
by many of our best business men. Other business houses have 
followed in the wake of the Third National and have taken on the 
light, heat and water utilities. 

In 1905, the Mount Vernon State and Savings Bank was 
consolidated with the Third National Bank, and its capital stock 
increased to one hundred thousand dollars and its business greatly 
extended, until now no banking institution in the state stands higher 
in the business world than the Third National Bank of Mount Ver- 
non — its present capital stock being $100,000 with a surplus of 
$65,000; National Bank notes, $100,000; deposits, $603,618.79. 
Its present board of directors are: J. R. Allen, W. C. Arthurs, 
R. J. Bond, Sam Casey, L. L. Emmerson, G. Gale Gilbert, I. G. 
Gee. Rufus Grant, A. C. Johnson, C. E. McAtee, Jerome Man- 
nen, B. A. Marshall, F. E. Patton, J. H. Rackaway, Kirby Smith. 
Its officers are: A. C. Johnson, president; I. G. Gee, vice-president; 
C. E. McAtee, vice-president; L. L. Emmerson, cashier; F. E. 
Patton, assistant cashier; Rufus Grant, assistant cashier. 

The Waltonville, Woodlawn and Kell private banks have 
gentlemen connected with the Third as promoters. The Third Na- 
tional is a government depository. 



The Sacred Holidays at Hand. Love — A social Converse. 

Pity the sorrows of a poor old man, 

Whose trembling limbs have borne him to your door. 
Whose days are dwindled to the shortest span; 

O give relief, and Heaven will bless your store. 

This is the feeling that has filled our heart as we have visited 
our people and importuned them for something to put into this 
book that may be useful and interesting to the readers of county 
history. But after all, it has been to us the "labor of love," for it 
is an actual pleasure to trace the history of a people like the pio- 
neers of Jefferson county and their successors, and we 

May do the work which the Master gives. 

What kindly acts we may. 
For only once in the journey of life 

Will our footsteps pass this way. 

We may not turn back or retrace our steps. 

To perform some task undone. 
For only one time we do tread life's path. 

Only one time — just one. 

And just as of old the days will come and go. 

The spring with its flow'rs and the winter v\ath its snow ; 


258 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

The hours pass away, the seasons warm and cold. 
And time rolls along today, just as of old. 

And our closing prayer is: 

"Our Father who are in Heaven, 
Thy blessing we implore. 
That these, Thy loving children. 
May enter through the door, 

"Which is Jesus our great Saviour, 
To the realms of bliss and love, 
, And ever live to praise Thee 
In the mansions above. 

"May Thy loving arms protect them. 
And thine ever watchful eye. 
May it always shine upon them. 
And Thy presence e'er be nigh. 

"Pour Thy spirit out upon them 
And cause them to understand. 
That in everytime of trouble, 
TTiou wilt lend a helping hand. 

"Be to them a shield, a cover, 
A protection from all sin. 
In the name of Christ, our Saviour, 
Therefore gently lead them in. 

"May Thy loving arm protect them. 
This we ask Thee once again. 
In the name of Christ, our Saviour, 
And for Jesus' sake. Amen." 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 259 

Jefferson county shares in the oil excitement which has been 
prevalent for a few years throughout Southern Illinois. 

The citizens of Mount Vernon again have the oil fever, and 
many believe that the soil of Jefferson county contains oil though 
the attempts heretofore made to locate it have not proved very 
satisfactory, nor resulted in much good in a financial way. Boring 
has been done in various sections of the county but during the past 
few months little was done in that line, but it seems oil prospecting 
has taken a new impetus, and will probably be pushed with much 
vigor soon. Leases are again being procured, and the Daily Reg- 
ister recently contained the following: 

The oil fever which died down after a number of unsuccessful 
reports on prospect holes, has been renewed with an activity that 
betokens something. 

W. E. Gulp, Jr., of Casey, Illinois, filed ninety-seven leases 
recently, covering a block of two thousand acres in Field 
and Rome townships. The conditions of the lease compel drilling 
to be done inside of two years from the date of lease, and cover 
the right on oil and gas. One-eighth of the oil and twenty-five dol- 
lars for each oil or gas producing well is what the owner of the land 
gets, the money to be paid three months in advance on each well 

There is no question as to great beds of coal beneath our feet, 
which will be developed in due season. And if we can add to that 
a producing oil field, there is no telling what else may happen to 
Jefferson county and which may be told by the next historian. 


Then pealed the bells, more loud and deep, 
"God is not dead; nor doth He sleep! 

260 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

The wrong shall fail, the right prevail. 

With peace on earth, good-will to men." 

The gladsome holidays always bring hope and good cheer. 
Who would blot them out? From our earliest recollection we re- 
member the holiday season as the very best time of the year, not 
only on account of the social enjoyment it brings, but because it 
carries us back to the time when angels sang the new song, and all 
the sons of God shouted for joy. 

We are now entering the joyful holidays, perhaps the last, for 
us. We confess to having very little affinity for those who think 
that "all days are alike" — for those who have no sympathy with, or 
regard for, the landmarks of life, the anniversary of birth or mar- 
riage or departure even of their loved ones — who care nothing for 
the Fourth of July, when their country was born, or the 12th and 
22d of February, when its preservers were born, or even the 25th 
of December, when their Saviour came to earth. We have no fel- 
lowship with such unsympathetic anti-periodical people. We do 
not charge them with any unpardonable sin, but we feel that they 
bar themselves from much pleasure and much profit by their stoical 
indifferences. Let us open up our hearts and take in the blessed 
thoughts of the holiday season, for it is a good time to be young 
again, and to enjoy the passing moments, while at the same time we 
make high resolves for the future. Let this be our intellectual bill 
of fare: 

1 . The value of time. 

2. The success of perseverance. 

3. The pleasure of working. 

4. The dignity of simplicity. 

5. The worth of character. 

6. The power of kindness. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL, 261 

7. The influence of example. 

8. The obligation of duty. 

9. The wisdom of economy. 
1 0. The virtue of patience. 

1 1 . The improvement of talent. 
12. The joy of originating. 

Let us personally resolve: 

"I will not worry. 
"I will not be afraid. 
"I will not give way to anger. 
"I will not yield to envy, jealously or hatred. 
"I will be kind to every man, woman or child with whom I 
come in contact. 

"I will be cheerful and hopeful. 

"I will trust in God and bravely face the future. 

As we pass down town on these blessed holidays and see the 
Christmas goods on display, we are reminded that we are, both 
young and old, simply, 


Window wishers, window wishers, everywhere we go; 
In front of every shop and store they're standing in a row; 
Some are old and some are young; sober ones and gay. 
Drifting in a wishing dream as every mortal may. 

Mothers with their hearts of love are gazing at the toys. 
Wishing for the gifts to glad their precious girls and boys. 
Women, women, everywhere — sweethearts, sisters, wives — 
Wishing for the joys they know would lift their patient lives. 

262 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

Oh that every empty hand might have its fill of gold. 
And every gift the wishers ask be theirs to have and hold ; 
And wreathed with every happy dream an answer should be 

Till all the hungry hearts might breathe the blessed word 


'Tis good the hapless ones of earth who feel Dame Fortune's 

May yet a-window-wishing go through all the streets of town; 
For earth still holds its meed of gold, despite its dark alloy. 
So long as we dream of things to fill the heart with joy. 

And life's a-window-wishing play since all our fleeting years 
We're gazing at the "great beyond," and wishing through our 

tears : 
But "over there" each thristing rose is kissed with blissful dew. 
And every wish will be fulfilled and all our dreams come true. 

"Life was lent for noble deeds, and learn to labor and to 
wait" is the basic idea of a true life. Labor is mighty and beautiful, 
and the noblest man on earth is he who puts his hands cheerfully and 
promptly to any honest task and goes forth in faith to secure honor and 
true worth. Without labor nothing can be accomplished, but it is 
no man's mission to create, for Providence has furnished the "raw 
material" to his hands, and there is not an atom of material used 
by man, either as food, clothing and in any enterprise in life, but it 
has been placed in the earth for man to bring forth and mould into 
the desired conditions of usefulness. Man was given brain and 
brawn and the ability to labor, to enable him to work out his ma- 
terial salvation, just as he was given will power to work out his 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 263 

spiritual salvation. And back of all this was implanted in the heart 
the principles of charity, kindness, love, hope and faith, like "apples 
of gold in pitchers of silver," in order that the brotherhood of man 
might be perfected, that the "one who went about doing good" 
might be the great head of us all. Then, indeed, "faith will be the 
substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen" and 
"love be the fulfilling of the law." "Do unto others as ye would 
that they should do unto you," would then be the rule, and the 
Millenium would soon be ushered in, and so mote it be. 

MYTHS EXPLODED — Scholars tell us that in most of myths 
there is an element of truth. Most of the myths of our childhood 
disappear as we grow older. Take for instance the myth that "the 
father of our country told the truth at the risk of getting a thrash- 
ing." While the later historian plainly tells that he told exactly 
opposite to keep from being castigated. It came about in this way ; 
George and his little cousin, Ike, were out in the garden cutting 
and slashing everything that came in their way. Finally the father 
happened along and saw that they had 'hacked' his favorite cherry 
tree, and in his rage, menacingly inquired, "Who cut that tree? 
George, forseeing what would happen next, hastily replied, "Father, 
I can not tell a lie, Ike (pointing to his cousin), cut it with my little 
hatchet." George escaped the licking, and the dull reporter got 
things mixed as usual and said George admitted the cutting. 

They tell us now that Columbus didn't discover America. 
That he got sea-sick and wanted to go back home. That the sail- 
ors said: "Pike's Peak or Bust." and that Christopher went into 
his state-room and wouldn't play until some loud-mouthed sailor 
yelled out "land, by golly." And Christopher came to the front 
and claimed all the credit — just as you hear fellows today claiming 
the credit of putting down the rebellion. So with Paul Revere's 
ride, they say Paul was thrown from a rocky-horse, when a boy and 

264 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

never could be induced to mount a horse as he grew older, and so 
about "Sheridan twenty-miles away." He was away from his 
command without leave of absence, and he put his spurs to old 
Black in order to get back before his absence was detected. 

But is it not so with Santa Claus. For years during the trans- 
ition period of our lives he may seem far away. But later, he en- 
ters — into us and teaches the lesson that it is "more blessed to give 
than to receive." In our more mature years we catch the spirit of 
Santa Claus and become his agents. We cherish the idea, not the 
form; when the sad are comforted, the children blessed and needy 
supplied during Santa Claus season of good-will, to the doer of 
these merciful deeds there comes the silent image of the most gentle 
face the world has ever seen — the Christ image, and the myth be- 
comes a living truth. May the time speedily come when the reign of 
this charitable season may last the whole year round. 


As we close this brief history, we welcome with acclaim the 
new born year of 1 909. Let us face this new year with brave hearts 
and better determinations, placing before us as we advance the 
Cross of Christ, believing that in proportion as we are loyal to this 
symbol shall we have strength given us to endure hardships as good 
soldiers of the Master, patience to suffer without giving way to de- 
spair, sorrow and misfortune, and spiritual courage, so that we can 
come through every temptation tirumphant and unafraid. 

As we tarry awhile. 

At the sign of the smile. 

Let us "take up the ark and pass o'er into the realms of 

"What is to be," with determined souls. 

St. James asks: "What is thy life?" and his own answer to 
the question is: "For ye are a vapor, that appeareth for a little 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO.. ILL. 265 

time, and then vanisheth away." The brevity of Hfe has been the 
subject of deep thought and of anxious soHcitude in all ages of the 
world. The poet tells us : "Our birth is nothing but our death be- 
gun." It is likened to a dream, a shadow, a vapor, a swift flying 
cloud, or the autumn leaf. Such is life ! this life we are living away ; 
this life that will so soon be over ; this life on whose transient breath 
hangs everlasting destiny. 

But we fail to appreciate life's meaning if we spend our time 
is sighing over its brevity. Life is not merely a vapor that presently 
vanisheth, it is a journey to a fixed destination. We are not only 
going, but we are going somewhere ; not into the depths of a mystic 
solitude to be extinguished and forgotten. Our destiny is not an- 
nihilation and nothingness. To go forward aimlessly is the most in- 
excusable folly. To have around him all the evidences of God — 
and never to see them — to look upon a thousand church spires that 
point to an eternal life, and miss all their meanings, to be in a land 
of Bibles that reveal God's purposes for man's eternal destiny and 
be ignorant of his own end is indeed a negligence which it is difficult 
to comprehend. It is not death but life that is before us, not earthly 
life alone, but life a thread running interminably through the warp of 
eternity. Life is given us to be used with a view to its eternal destiny 
To use it so as to give the soul room for its unfolding capacities, to 
use it to promote the highest good, to use it so as to make the most of 
it, that is to have before us a high and true ideal and the greatest 
hope for any event that can possibly follow. If we but work out 
our destiny according to the divine purpose it can not fail to be eter- 
nal glory. 


With reverent heart we turn anew 
An untouched page of time 

266 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

'Tis ours to fill with noble deeds 

Or stain with sin and crime; 
Then e're we mar its surface pure — 

Ere we begm anew, 
'Tis well that our last year's work. 

We take a short review. 

So much there is of pleasantness 

Our record has to tell 
And so much done unworthily 

We might have done so well ; 
Though mental retrospection shows 

That shine exceeds the shade; 
Too late we would erase the blots 

Of past mistakes we made. 

Let's turn the new leaf, look not back 

To grieve o'er loss and pain. 
But view the future's spotless page 

Where we begin again; 
And here resolve, by God's own grace, 

That we will do our best 
To keep life's record clean and pure 

And trust Him for the rest. 


Love is of divine origin — it is the Creator himself . It has de- 
creed every good thing enjoyed by mankind. It sent not only life 
and every attendant blessing to the human race, but it hath brought 
salvation and eternal happiness to every soul that will accept it. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 267 

Love in one form or another is the ruhng element in life and happy 
are we if that ruling element is based on the divine plan. Love is 
the perpetual melody of humanity. True love elevates the intellect 
and enlightens the soul. Love purifies the heart and crucifies selfish- 
ness, and gives higher motives and nobler aims to life. Love is the 
actual need, the requirement of the heart. Love makes memory 
bright and home beautiful. Love keeps us close to our dear ones on 
earth and continually draws us towards our loved ones in heaven. 
Love overcomes difficulties and says that the right must be done. 
Love unites human hearts and continues to make the world go round. 
Without love mankind would perish from the face of the earth. It 
elevates the aspirations, expands the soul, and stimulates all the 
powers and energies of the human species — in short, it fulfills the 
decree of the Almighty. Love blends hearts in blissful unity and 
without it there would be no organized homes, no softening, elevat- 
ing influences of domestic life, the only safe-guard of this old world. 


Love makes the mind clean and clear, so that it stops liking 
unclean things like bad food and ugly squeezed bodies and cigars. 
And love makes the mind kindly, so that it does not yearn for more 
than its share of other people's money. So in the gaining or the 
maintaining of health, too, love is the fulfilling of the law. And 
how about beauty? Why, beauty is merely health — plus love. 
Therefore, if you have love you have all things, for all things are 
ruled by law; love is the fulfilling of the law. 

"Life without love! Oh what it would be, 
A world without a sun — 
Cold as the snow-capped mountain dark 

268 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

As myriad nights in one ; 
A barren scene without one spot 

Amidst the waste, 
Without one blossom 

Of feeUng or taste. 

"They sin who tell us love can die; 
With life all other passions fly, 

All others are but vanity. 
In heaven ambition can not dwell. 
Nor avarice in the vaults of hell. 
Earthly these passions of the earth. 
They perish where they have their birth. 
But love is indestructible — 
Love is eternal." 


All through this history we have tried to do justice to the 
women of Jefferson county. "History repeats itself," hence we have 
license to repeat what we have already said and add that all import- 
ant matters in this life has a "woman in it," even from the time of our 
introduction into the world, until our taking off. 

Woman ! without thee, we do not care to live, 

No not a blessed minute; 
Nor yet hike to that far away land of love, 

If there's no "woman in it." 

And this reminds us that Miss Emma Johnson, librarian of the 
Mount Vernon Carnegie Library, was the very first person to sug- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL, 269 

gest to the representative of Messrs. Bowen & Company, the writer 
as a suitable "old settler" to get together proper matter for such a 
publication ; and whatever gratification Jeff ersonians may get out of 
perusing it, is due in a large measure to that estimable woman — as 
the gentleman to whom the suggestion was made followed us up 
to another town and insisted on us taking the job, which with some 
degree of reluctance, we finally did, determined to do the right thing 
and deal justly by all — the women included, and hence his final 
tribute to woman. Miss Johnson is the popular manager of the li- 
brary, one of our highly prized institutions. She is a native of Jef- 
ferson county, daughter of the late G. Wesley Johnson, and grand- 
daughter of Rev. John Johnson — "Uncle Jacky," as we used to 
call him, and whose life record is given elsewhere in this book. 

Many noble women have filled their niche and gone to the 
glory land. Many others are "happy on the way," not only in 
Mount Vernon, but in Dix, Woodlawn, Waltonville, Bonnie, Ina, 
Opdyke, Belle Rive, Bluford and other towns in Jefferson county, 
and we even know one just across the line in another county. Such 
is life — a life that is devoted to good and loving deeds. 



From Early Mount Vernon Papers, With Connecting Links 
From Later Dates. 

"A chief amang ye, takin' notes. 
And faith, he's prent 'em." 

"Here shall the press of the people rights maintain 
Unawed by influence, unbribed by gain." 

Much has been lost to this history by our not being able to 
secure files of the early newspapers published in Mount Vernon. 
It is only a stray copy now and then that we can find of the fifties 
and sixties. Dr. J. H. Newton, M. J. Seed, Miss Laura Satterfield 
and others have favored us with a few copies from which we select 
such items as go to make up history, but there are many more. It 
seems that no families have kept regular files of the county papers, 
and even the printing offices have changed owners so often that none 
of the annual files are complete, except in case of the Register, since 
Mr. Seed took charge of it, he has bound in book forms each year, 
but his files do not record back to the time of which we speak. We 
would suggest that families keep files of their local papers, so as to 
be posted on local happenings in Jefferson county and then the his- 
torian will not have the trouble we have had in hunting for "con- 
necting links." Most of the items below date back to the cyclone. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 271 

but not all the dates we hoped to get. But such as we have, give 
we unto you: 

We have before us a copy of the Mount Vernon Sentinel dated 
January 16, 1857, fifty-one years ago, published by Wall and 
Baugh. The motto reads: "We claim the right of thought, and 
what we think assert," and that perhaps has always rendered both 
Wall and Baugh, unpopular, because they assert what they think, 
no matter if they do not always think just alike. The Sentinel com- 
plains of the slowness of the mails — saying that it had just received 
the Chicago Tribune of December 26th, twenty-seven days from 
Chicago. It also contains the official vote for President cast the 
first week in November, to-wit: Buchanan, 1,837,914; Fremont, 
1,357,410; Fillmore, 878,200. It also complains of very cold 
weather and says the thermometer stands below "cairo." James West- 
cott was Sheriff, John S. Bogan, Circuit Clerk. It copied from the 
St. Louis papers the fact that the city had 125,000 and Chicago 
had 1 1 0,000 inhabitants ; now St. Louis has 800,000 and Chicago 
has 2,000,000. The Sentinel had a big lot of legal ads and law- 
yers' cards from all around. Wall and Baugh were both young 
and frivolous then, see them now. 

Another copy of an old paper, the Unionist, dated 1 866, gives 
a list of names forming the organization of the Union or Republican 
party in Jefferson county by townships as follows: 

Mount Vernon — Jasper Partridge, J. J. Maxey, R. W. Lyon, 
C. M. Lyon. 

Jackson (Dodds) — Sam Gibson, John Frizelle, Sam God- 

Long Prairie— Dr. W. Nichols, J. B. Gaston, V. J. Maxey. 

Farrington — T. H. McBride, Dr. Gregory, B. T. Wood. 

Lynchburg — Russell Brown, Abraham Marlow, Jared Foster. 

Moore's Prairie — D. Rotrannel, Charles Judd, Vest Mc- 

272 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

Spring Garden — Gabriel Peavler, Wiley Prigmore, Sam 

Elk Prairie— Col. G. W. Evans. H. R. Dare, Ike Boswell. 

Horse Prairie — Josiah Willis, James Junkins, Starks. 

Knob Prairie — John Dodds, Capt. Joe Laur, J. R. Watkins. 

Blissville — John Fairchild, Andrew Welch, Joe Tuttle. 

Grand Prairie — Lemon Pouts, Jacob Breeze, J. P. Renfro. 

These were the men around which the Union sentiment clustered 
and from this effort, the three thousand two hundred Republican 
votes cast at last year's election sprung. 

We had just moved the Unionist office to Main street, about 
where Hobb's express office is now. The Eighteenth Regiment of 
Volunteers passed through Mount Vernon, getting home from the 
war. The Unionist had a New Year's address in which it said: "For 
the first time since the organization of the government we enter upon 
a new year and as a free nation, not only in name but in law and in 
fact." It is still our contention that the "boys in blue" put in the 
enacting clause in the Declaration of Independence — that "all men 
are created free and equal, and are endowed by their Creator with 
life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness." Don't forget that the 
Union soldiers of 1861-65 made these words true for the first time 
in the history of America. 

An I. O. O. F. committee composed of E. E. Welbom, James 
Tolle, C. W. Pavey and John A. Wall published in this issue a 
tribute of respect to Henry B. Maxey, deceased. Mark Hails had 
just became landlord of the Johnson House. The paper said it was 
reported that eight or ten wells would be sunk for oil in Clark county 
in the spring, but it was nearly forty springs before these wells were 
actually sunk and Clark county became the oil center. 

Johnson, Ham and Tolle, S. T. Stratton & Sons, J. Pace & 
Son, Taylor & Watson, Tamer & Baltzell, Pavey & Allen, Hobbs 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 273 

& Welborn, H. W. Seimer, J. S. Klinker were doing the business 
of Mount Vernon then. Barg Casey and J. W. Johnson were just 
back from the petroleum field of West Virginia and were ready to 
sell oil stock. J. F. Johnson and A. M. Grant were still buying tax 
lands and James P. Haynes was landlord at the Allen House. J. 
E. Fergerson had withdrawn from the firm of Stratton & Fergerson, 
and Stratton & Sons continued the business. Johnson & Tolle in 
their efforts to please advertised buckwheat-cake material and ready- 
made walnut coffins for sale, all this within the last forty-three years. 
Since then, Johnson, Ham and Tolle, and the Strattons are all 
gone, except Rynd L., who sells stoves, hardware, etc. 

We have before us two papers which would be greatly inter- 
esting to future readers had we space and time to condense the mat- 
ter contained in them. One refers to the destruction and recupera- 
tion of Mount Vernon after being destroyed by the cyclone, the 
other refers to the great fire that ruined Chicago and to the recon- 
struction which has made it almost the greatest city in the world. 
Without its cyclone. Mount Vernon could not have progressed to 
the point of excellence which it has reached, and without its great 
fire Chicago would never have achieved the prosperity it has had 
since that fatal night in October, 1871. In 1881 the town election 
showed sixty-three votes for license and five hundred and sixty-six 
against license. Varnell was elected Mayor. The accommodation 
train daily to St. Louis was put on. The construction of the Air 
Line Railroad was engrossing the minds of the people from Mount 
Vernon to Mount Carmel. A jail delivery took place. Speaking 
of railroads, the News refers to the Louisville & Nashville, the 
Louisville, Eastern & St. Louis, the Mount Vernon and Tamaroa, 
the St. Louis & Eastern. This doesn't sound bad for Mount Vernon, 
and they all came in due time. Dick Cadle, who was then running 
the Continental Hotel, put his warning in the News, "Having gained 


274 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

the confidence of the grocers and butchers of Mount Vernon I am 
now getting my supplies on credit and do not expect to pay for them 
which enables me to furnish the best day board at three dollars and 
fifty cents per week, four dollars with furnished rooms." 

We have before us several copies of the Mount Vernon Star, 
published 1862-3-4, in the interests of slavery and the southern 
confederacy. At the head they say, "our candidate for President, 
C. L. Vallindigham," whom it will be remembered was banished 
from the United States for his disloyalty. The whole tenor of 
these papers are of the treasonable order, such as might have in- 
duced Vallindigham to make the writer a member of his cabinet had 
he been made President. In one of the editorials it says: "Democrats 
arouse and protect yourselves; prepare not with the ballot box, but 
with the cartridge box." In another place it says, "The Abolition- 
ists seem to be indignant because the copper heads did not join in 
their jubilee over the down fall of Vicksburg." Speaking of the fall 
of Vicksburg he says, "Have mercy on us — the glory, peace and 
happiness and liberty are no more. Such is its picture of the Fourth 
of July, 1863." In large letters at the head of the paper it says, 
"The Star, devoted to the abolition of the Abolition party." And 
yet while the Star and its disloyal vemon has long been buried and 
forgotten the party referred to is still in full control of the best 
government on earth. The paper claimed to be the mouth piece of 
the Democratic administration of Jefferson county and the fact that 
the sheet was issued in one of the rooms of the court-house free of 
rent seemed to prove the assertion. About the only item untouched 
by class hatred we find in these papers was the announcement that 
Rev. J. A. Robinson would preach the funeral of Gov. Zadok 
Casey at the Methodist Episcopal church the second Sunday in 
August, 1863. 

A copy of the News, H. H. Simmons, editor, is before us. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 275 

dated 1878. He alludes to the business of Mount Vernon as be- 
ing conducted by Barger Brothers, Stratton, Pace & Westbrook, 
D. B. Goodrich, M. M. Goodale. S. S. Porter, E. M. Sheppard. 
L. H. Thompson, Charles Zierjacks, Amsbury Company, Hobbs, 
Tabb & Haynes, Varnell & Company, Bittroff & Ryan, J. W. 
Baugh, police magistrate. W. E. Jackson, J. E. Fergerson & 
Company, Mr. and Mrs. James Hitchcock, W. S. Hollowell, 
Pavey & Allen, Preston & Libby, Doctor Blum and others. In 1876 
we find the News under C. L. Hayes, fighting Gen. W. B. Ander- 
son, as not being a Democrat, although he was a staunch Democrat 
half a century before the News saw the light. The copy before us, 
August 16th, contains a notice of the death of Harvey T. Pace, 
whose history already has been given and whose remains together 
with that of his wife lies under monuments in Old Union cemetery. 
Two copies of the Mount Vernon Exponent contains the in- 
formation that the Air Line (now Southern) was to be finished 
next year. A coal company was organized and subscriptions 
amounting to ten thousand dollars were taken up and although this 
was in 1881 , in looking over the list we find that more than half of 
the subscribers are dead and gone. Jefferson county's census for 
1 880 was announced at twenty thousand six hundred and eighty-six. 
Nugent & Brother had laid a basis of success in Mount Vernon 
and moved to St. Louis, where they now rank among the first busi- 
ness men of that city. Business had been shifting again; R. E. 
Ryan, R. F. Pace, Hicks & Company, B. F. Harmon, Wise & 
Brother, Hudspeth & Poole, G. F. M. Ward, Howard Brothers, 
Rentchler & Waters, Simmons & Hinman, G. W. Yost & Com- 
pany were at it. The Webb Brothers, A. D. and A. C, severed 
their connection with the Progressive Farmer and opened a law 
office. A. C. died and A. D. is now County Judge. A. B. Bar- 
rett came down from Chicago, supposedly to relieve Jefferson coun- 

276 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

ty of her railroad indebtedness. The News gives the 1888 vote to 
Cleveland. 2,378, Harrison, 1 ,981 . W. A. Davis was elected Cir- 
cuit Clerk, W. H. Green State Attorney and Kirby Smith Surveyor. 


We have before us the first number of the Mount Vernon 
Register, issued by Morris Emmerson, dated May 26, 1 884. Mr. 
Henry Hitchcock sold the Exponent office to Mr. Emmerson, and 
went to farming north of town, and afterward built the house now 
occupied by Mr. Hoyt. The Register had but few ads, among 
them, Howard Brothers, who had just established a grocery store 
where the post-office now is. A Mount Vernon lady devoted to the 
Lord's cause all the eggs laid by her hens on Sunday. John Varnell 
was given a place in the government printing office at Washington. 
In its issue of June 4th, an exciting runaway of horse and buggy 
containing Paul Curnick and Miss Grace Plumber is recorded. 
General Anderson, Rev. Locke and Shelby Brown addressed the 
soldiers on Decoration day. The people decided to have a big 
Fourth of July. Even in the year 1 884, Theodore Roosevelt was 
heard from. He says, "I am called a reformer, I am also a Re- 
publican." The most of this issue was taken up with the new ordi- 
nances of Mount Vernon, over eight columns. 

July 2d, the Register office is removed to a room west of 
Bond's drug store. Doctor Hubbell, oculist, and Doctor Hurtt, 
dentist, and E. E. Crebbs are wanting patronage. Joshua Cannon 
Maxey, Rev. Lewis Johnson and a few other "relics" made talks 
on the Fourth of July. 

The issue of July 23d contained the death of Aunt Susan 
Johnson, consort of Rev. Jacky Johnson. Mat Bolin reported that 
the coal mine bore was down one hundred and seventy feet and still 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 277 

going. To Mr. Bodin more than any other man is due the fact 
that we have a coal mine. 

S. H. Watson sold his grocery store to Charles Pace and 
Stinson. Anderson, Hudspeth, Taylor & Company opened their 
new store. Clark Johnson was still holding Sunday school con- 

The history of the baseball movement in Mount Vernon dates 
away back into the seventies, but as it is going and growing we will 
leave its record to the next historian, we don't play. 

A. M. Stratton defeated George H. Varnell for Senator. The 
"Old Folks" meeting was presided over by "Uncle Jick" Maxey, 
J. M. Pace, secretary. Mount Vernon Lodge, Independent Order 
of Odd Fellows, celebrated its fiftieth anniversary. The Register 
of June 7th has a whole column of local accidents, murders, suicides 
and fracuses. It seemed to be the devil's week. Sam Casey was 
married to a Kentucky belle. John A. Wall, a newspaper man of 
varied experiences is now peacefully following agricultural pur- 
suits. Rev. R. B. Hoyt, Episcopal minister, was buried at Oak- 
wood. One hundred loads of Jefferson county coal were hauled 
to town last week. S. P. McCrea was chosen superintendent of 
the Mount Vernon schools in place of Professor Barnhart. The 
Louisville & Nashville gave a free excursion to St. Louis for all its 
employes and their families. Four car loads of Indian prisoners 
enroute to Florida stopped here for an hour. 

October 8th W. F. Davis appointed to Methodist Episcopal 
church. Death of Mrs. Nathaniel Parker. Terms were made with 
a drill company to keep drilling until a workable vein of coal is 
reachd at the place where the mine now is. Bossed by Mat Bolin. 

October 1 3th, 1 4th, 1 5th. The largest soldier's reunion ever 
held in the county except the one held in Casey's pasture in 1 868. 
at which Generals Logan, Sherman and Shields were present. 

278 wall's history of jefferson co. ill.. 

R. L. Stratton & Company were awarded the contract for 
putting the iron fence around the court-house. The fence was later 
bought by Doctor Green and still encloses the Green property, ex- 
cept what the county placed around the jail. October 21st, Gen. C. 
W. Pavey's mother, aged eighty-five, was buried. 

March 27, 1886, J. F. Carroll, County Treasurer, died. 

April 1 7th, Mrs. D. C. Warren died. Francis G. Blair, 
the present state superintendent of schools taught school at Mount 

April I 1, 1886, George M. H ay nes' father died. Also Thomas 
Hansacker, aged seventy. Issue of May 1 9th contains a list of the 

Jefferson county wanderers two pages, or twelve columns, we 

would like to give it here but its length forbids. Still the list shows 
how people scatter over the world when they leave their childhood 
homes. In 1 886 Mount Vernon had given Chicago a city superin- 
tendent of mails and a grain inspector; Springfield an editor of the 
state Journal, Cairo a revenue collector, a chief clerk and a mail 
messenger in Washington City, an able bodied guard for the national 
treasury. Joe Goodrich withdraws from the race for Sheriff, thor- 
oughly disgusted with the rottenness of politics and the race nar- 
rowed down to two ex-Confederate soldiers. Coleman post had one 
hundred seventy-five members in 1 886, those who were members at 
that time are now all dead, except forty-two, which fact shows that 
the "boys in blue" will soon all be gone. 

The county election resulted in Democratic success by greatly 
reduced majorities. Death of Judge Walter B. Scales, of Evans- 
ton. Another one of the Nugent brothers at St. Louis married 
a Mount Vernon girl. Miss Lillie Patton. Rev. W. P. Thogmor- 
ton and his Baptist banner located in Mount Vernon. 

November 24th, coal found at the depth of eight hundred and 
forty-six feet and great rejoicing. Who shall operate it? Colonel 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 279 

Evans, Captain Watson, J. E. Fergerson, S. T. Stratton and Capt. 
John Gibson immediately got together and decided to dig. Phil 
E. Whiting came in as a lawyer and bandleader. 

December 26th Gen. John A. Logan died. L. L. Emmer- 
son and Jarvis Crackel came to Mount Vernon to locate. R. F. 
Pace appointed postmaster of Mount Vernon. J. W. Grear bought 
the Mount Vernon News of Simmons. Doctor Gregory died out at 
Farrington. He was postmaster and used to empty the mail out on 
the table and say, "Boys come and pick out your letters." Jesse 
Laird, another of Moore's Prairie pioneers, dies. Also Edward 
Birdhead, also Major A. D. Estes, aged seventy-three. Older 
inhabitants remember A. D. Estes. Fred Watson purchased J. 
S. Green's implement store, which led up the present wholesale 
building of F. P. Watson and brother on Tenth street. 

The Jefferson county board of supervisors, with A. B. Barrett 
at the front were investigating the Register for what it had said 
about the board, result "nit." 

April 6th Judge H. S. Treat, who so long presided over the 
Supreme Court here died. The many friends of Thomas Casey 
gave him a banquet on the eve of his departure. Green P. Garner 
still trying to recover the swamp land for the county, and Doctor 
Green claiming that it belonged to the original Mount Vernon Rail- 
road Company. Garner disturbed the peace and dignity and paid 
thirteen dollars for privilege. 

April 20th Varnell elected Mayor over J. M. Pace by two 
hundred and eight majority. Majority of thirty-three against li- 
cense, but by some hocus pocus licenses were issued, not rightfully, 
however. The Moss family held a reunion at Shiloh May 16th. 
The Southern Illinois Press Association honored Mount Vernon 
with its annual meet, and a good time was had, ending with a ban- 
quet. J. A. Wall and wife took charge of the Farmers' Home 



Hotel, and farmers felt themselves at home when they came to 
town. Announcement was made that Barrett's circus would show 
on the 16th. Some of the Register's readers thought that meant 
"Barrett's Supervisors." May 20th Logan and Elizina Sawyer 
were divorced by Judge Boggs at 1 1 o'clock and they were re- 
married at 2 p. m. same day. Col. Ike Clements, of the Soldiers' 
Orphans' Home was the Decoration day orator, exercises held at 
Salem cemetery. 

A couple of Jefferson county youths, aged respectively seventy- 
four and seventy, got married, which shows that all lines of business 
is being shoved. Charles Zierjacks died. October 8th Doctor Locke 
finished his discourses at the Methodist Episcopal church, and was 
succeeded by Dr. O. H. Clark. County fair with Pavey, Moss, 
Casey and Cook on hand with fine stock. November 1 2th Cleve- 
land elected President. Register removed to the Phoenix block. 
Mrs. S. E. Watson announced the opening of the Women's Chis- 
tian Temperance Union reading rooms. 

Issue March 11, 1885. C. A. Keller moved to Texas. Dr. 
J. W. Hitchcock died. 

April 1 st Adam Clark Johnson resigned the control of Jef- 
ferson county Sunday school work to D. B. Goodrich — both now 
dead. John A. Wall resigned his position as foreman of the Reg- 
ister office and was succeeded by Henry L. Ellis. The city voted 
for license by one hundred and seventy-nine majority. 

Issue April 22d Rev. E. P. Lewis installed pastor of the Pres- 
byterian church. Independent band organized, with Louis Karcher, 
Merrit Chance, Will Young, Ogie Collins, Edward Davis, Clar- 
ence Lyon, Will Rutherford, China Galbreath, Steve Rogers, Ar- 
thur Rutherford, Elmer Casey. Albert Carter, Will Price as 

July 1st, marriage of Daniel Nugent, of St. Louis, and 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 281 

Miss Carrie Casey, daughter of Col. T. S. Casey. Greenlawn 
skating rink in full blast. Extension of Air Line Railroad to St. 
Louis decided upon. General Anderson appointed revenue col- 
lector. General Grant dead. June 22d, Mrs. Martha C. Evans, 
wife of Colonel Evans, and daughter of Governor Anderson, died; 
also death of Mrs. Dr. McAnnully, daughter of J. R. Moss. 

July 1 5th Mount Vernon on a boom, electric lights being pro- 
vided for. The Jeffersonville & Southeasern Railroad invades the 
county and touches the Louisville & Nashville at Drivers, secured 
by the never ceasing efforts of Judge Driver. Water works for 
Mount Vernon submitted to vote and carried. September 7th a 
threshing engine blows up near Spring Garden, Henry Mitchell and 
William Bumpus killed and several injured. 

September 2 1 st. The Southern Illinois soldiers' reunion is 
being held in Mount Vernon this week. The town is thoroughly 
decorated and filled to over flowing with "boys in blue," and their 
friends from everywhere. Truly a gala time, showing that Mount 
Vernon never does anything by halves. The prominent men who 
addressed this reunion have all passed to the front. 

September 22d, L. L. Emmerson present manager of the Re- 
publican party of Jefferson county and banker, and Miss Matthews 
were married. 

October 5th, Jefferson county fair in progress. October 1 6th, 
Judge J. R. Satterfield died. Van Wilbanks died. December 4th 
Major Noah Johnston died. His life history given elsewhere in 
these pages. Major Johnson issued to Bob Ingersoll license to 
practice law. Sally Maxey, wife of C. H. Maxey, died, aged 

L. Bitroff and Miss Jennie Pace, daughter of J. M. Pace, 
were married. January 1, 1888, C. W. Pavey & Sons' big dry- 
goods store destroyed by fire. James A. White, whose sleeping 
room was over the store, was cremated. 

282 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

February 1 9th. Mount Vernon destroyed by the fearful cy- 
clone, of which there is a brief account given in a former chapter. 
Twenty-two killed and over forty injured, besides a one million 
dollar loss in property, homes destroyed, etc. One thousand peo- 
ple rendered homeless. March 28th, everybody busy rebuilding 
and rehousing the people left destitute by the cyclone. Seaton Allen 
committed suicide. Judicial convention held in the Presbyterian 
church nominated S. C. Conger for Judge on the two hundred and 
seventy-sixth ballot. May 1st, O. M. Watters and Renie Pace 
wedded. Decoration day, addresses by Professor Villars, of Mc- 
Kendree College. Comrade John A. Wall spoke at Williamsburg. 

June 4th, David J. Baker elected Supreme Judge over Conger. 

July I, 1888, population of Mount Vernon three thousand 
four hundred and twenty-seven. Rev. J. B. Thompson came to the 
scattered congregation of the Methodist Episcopal church as a ray 
of sunshine and hope. Zadok Pace died. Baptist church dedi- 

November 8th, Harrison elected President, Fifer Governor. 
December 23d, a historical date, when Bishop Bowman dedicated 
the new Methodist Episcopal church. Doctor Locke preached in the 
afternoon and Doctor Fry in the evening. John .A. Wall chosen com- 
mander Coleman post. Miss Erme Cross started a kindergarten 
class at the Odd Fellows hall, and Jake Chance had one at his 
home, both successful. 

February 18th, cyclone memorial held at the Methodist Epis- 
copal church, for Register showing a picture of Mount Vernon as 
rebuilt. March 24th Mayor Varnell died. His was the first 
funeral held in the new Methodist Episcopal church. Cyclone com- 
mittee makes its final report. We would be greatly pleased to pur- 
sue this historical itemizing through the nineties but space forbids. 
Suffice it to say that many of the more prominent citizens even of 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO.. ILL. 283 

of the cyclone days passed to their reward soon after the above 
events, and the death Hst elsewhere tells the tale. 

Mount Vernon lost the Louisville & Nashville shops soon after 
this but the Mount Vernon Car Manufacturing Company came 

Mount Vernon inaugurated municipal improvements referred 
to elsewhere and the bright little city is still reaching forward for 
its legitimate place among the very best cities of the state. 

We close this chapter with greeting of joy for the living and 
departed, trusting the living may realize their highest hopes and 
greatest good, and hoping that the departed may now be occupying 
better homes than earth can afford, where no cares, no pains, no 
sorrow or cyclones can ever disturb their heavenly repose. 

So must it be — each hope and fear 

That blights the eye and clouds the brow 

Proclaims there is a happier sphere 

Than this bleak world that holds us now. 

There is a voice which sorrow bears 

When heaviest weighs life's galling claims; 
Tis heaven that whispers "dry thy tears — 
The good and pure shall meet again." 



Memory Still Links us to the Past. A few Happenings Away 
Back. Things Wise, and Otherwise. 

A little nonsense, now and then. 
Is relished by the best of men. 

No man can feel the greatest joy. 

Unless his life is blended 
With noble thoughts and noble deeds 

To cheer the heart that's mended. 

"Hew to the line, let the chips fall where they may," is a good 
motto for those who attempt to write history. This we have tried 
to do, regardless of whether the persons written of are living or 
dead. We are authorized to locate men in this world — "By their 
fruits ye shall know them" — but when they cross the divide, it is 
not ours to even attempt to fix their status. That only belongs to 
to the great and only Creator. The good book gives us the obituary 
of every man that ever lived in these words: "He lived so many 
years and he died." "He did that which was pleasing in the sight 
of the Lord — or he did that which was evil in the Lord's sight" 
and there we leave them. 

We deem it right and proper to give a few of the humorous 
things that have happened along the way as in memory they come 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 285 

back to us after the lapse of many years. Among our first acquaint- 
ance in Mount Vernon was Adam Clark Johnson, the historian 
from whom we have copied liberally in these pages. We have 
many times enjoyed his quaint sayings, have worked together with 
him in temperance work and the Sabbath school cause, and have 
known and respected him as a brother. We went out with him one 
Sunday to East Salem church to hold a Sunday school convention. 
We were importuned to teach a class which we finally did under 
protest. While trying to impress upon the minds of the boys the 
importance of living a Christian life, we propounded the following 
question: "Why do people call Brother Johnson a Christian, chil- 
dren?" "Because they don't know him," was the ready answer 
of a bright eyed boy. We "called the little fellow down," and he 
willingly admitted that he did not know Brother Johnson, and 
neither did he, for everybody knew that Adam Clark Johnson was 
a Christian in deed and in truth. But this incident shows the im- 
portance of being knowable. 


Years ago every speaker in political campaigns had a speech 
of his own, and only one. Some of the Democrats, including "Bill" 
Anderson, as we called him, and Charlie Robinson, the then school 
teacher, held a night meeting in the school-house in McClellan 
township. They all delivered their piece leaving Bill for the clos- 
ing, but the pieces were long and dry and the audience, which 
was small at the beginning, kept dwindling down until when it came 
Bill's time to orate, the half that remained slid silently out of the 
side door, leaving nobody but Bill and Charley in the school room. 
Bill didn't seem to notice the evaporation of his audience and "kept 
going." Finally Charlie handed him the key to the door and gently 

286 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

said : "Here, Will, you lock up when you get through," and Charlie 
made a bee-line for the door. 

Speaking of Joy Seed being named for Rev. Ephraim Joy, re- 
minds that one day we saw that reverend gentleman in a grove in 
Grant's pasture gesticulating and loudly talking, apparently to the 
trees. From the words heard as we passed by and from what we 
heard at the church the following Sunday, we felt convinced that he 
was simply "practicing what he preached" — just as all good min- 
isters and church members ought to do. 

And there was Brother John H. Hill, John Will Baugh's fa- 
ther-in-law. You remember how he used to catch up all the popular 
melodies of the day, putting them and some of the good old Meth- 
odist hymns together he would make the old church houses ring out 
sweet songs of praise. And he had no excuse to offer, except that 
he didn't believe the devil was entitled to anything good, especially 
any good tunes. An old sister used to say, "Brother Hill is not a 
"big preacher," but he is powerful in the hymn book. 

And Rev. John Thatcher, the old people remember him for 
his oddities. He had a farm just north of town, which he culti- 
vated as he preached. He drove out in an old shack of a buggy. 
One day some of we boys saw him coming with a large barrel 
across his buggy, while he stood up in front of it to drive the old 
gray horse. We dodged behind the Asa Watson hill to see the 
fun we felt sure was coming. Sure enough, as he drove down the 
hill the barrel rolled over him and the old gray, throwing him to 
the ground, while the horse went trotting down the hill. The Rev- 
erend jumped to his feet and looking after the disappearing buggy 
said in his peculiar snappy way, "I don't see how they can stand 
up and drive." Of course we boys were disappointed in the kind 
of words he used. But Brother Thatcher also practiced what he 


Rev. Zenas Clifford was another peculiar character, but a 
fearless one. During the war he was chaplain in the army as well 
as presiding elder in Southern Illinois. He was a "minute man," 
always ready to do duty wherever found, on the field, in hospital 
or in the pulpit. He had no use for forms and ceremonies, when 
duty required speedy action. Our older people will remember how 
he used to come into our most aristocratic churches, shed his old 
blue army over coat, throw it down at his feet, and as he did so an- 
nounce a hymn and request the congregation to sing. He was an 
outspoken Peter Cartright kind of a preacher, except that instead 
of coming down from the pulpit to thrash the offender he would 
everlastingly blister such with stinging rebukes. We remember on 
one occasion he was preaching from the text, "Thou are weighed in 
the balances and found wanting." A lot of smart-alecks kept run- 
ning in and out and he waited patiently for them to settle. Finally 
a couple of starchy-up-starts, members of the best families, got up 
and started for the door just as Clifford was repeating the text, when 
he raised his voice and added. "That's right, as fast as you shoats 
are weighed, just pass out." No more went out that time. At an- 
other meeting he severely rebuked a young man for acting silly, 
when an old lady came and sat down by the boy and kept him 
quiet until the service was over, when she told Clifford that her son 
had been kicked on the head by a mule, which was the reason of his 
wild actions. Ever after that he would give the incident and ex- 
plained that he refrained from rebuking young fellows who kept 
"cutting-up" in church, for fear some of them had been kicked in 
the head by a drove of mules. This settled them. 

Joshua P. Barrett was a man of peculiarities. One of these 
was his having a father-in-law living with him who was said to be 
the father of twenty-six children— old man Tong— whose remains 
repose in Old Union. Another peculiarity was. he persisted in keep- 

288 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

ing pet bears in a pen near the academy; he lived where Charley 
Poole now lives. The only zoology we ever learned was in teasing 
these bears on our way to and from school. The only day in the 
year when these bears got a rest was when a big circus came to town. 
Another oddity of the old man was (odd indeed in those days) — 
he was an abolitionist of the darkest hue. Another oddity was 
raising queer children like Amos B., Cyrus A., good fellows of 
course, but — 


It was no unusual happening for a colored man fleeing from 
slavery to freedom to pass through Jefferson county and they always 
had help and sympathy in their laudable desire for freedom. "The 
law was for the Sheriff to arrest such and put them in jail and ad- 
vertise them, and if the owners did not come after them they were 
sold to the highest bidder, to labor for their buyer until the owner 
should come after them. One by the name of Jackson — a good- 
hearted old man, had been in jail for some time. He was the only 
inmate and it fell to the writer to take his meals to him. And finally 
the jailer put him out in the truck-patch with the writer to "hoe 
corn." This truck-patch was located where the Mount Vernon 
lumber yard now is extending west to the Carlyle road. Our sym- 
pathy had been aroused in behalf of the old man, and he was not 
long in finding it out, and he said: "If you were me and wanted to 
go to Canada, where there is no slavery or being sold away from 
your family, what would you do?" We did not hestitate to give 
him an answer. We told him we would lose no time in going. 
"Well," said he, "may I go?" "Yes indeed," exclaimed we, "go 
if you want to." "God bless you young massa," said he and he 
went up the branch in the direction of Uncle Tommy Casey's, and 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 289 

was seen no more in Mount Vernon. This was a case of practical 
abolitionism, so far as we were concerned. 

At supper time we reported the absenteeism of old man Jack- 
son, ex-slave. 


In a former chapter we gave two thrilling incidents of lost and 
found children in Rome township. Now we have another, with a 
sadder ending than the others. In 1826, Joseph McMean settled 
in Jordan's Prairie. In the fall and winter his boys devoted some 
attention to trapping. One day they left the cabin with their traps 
as usual, when a little four year old sister started unknown to them, 
to follow. Her parents supposed she had been taken along, and 
knew no better until their return, reporting that they had seen noth- 
ing of her after leaving home. The alarm was spread and search 
kept up for many days, but the child was never found. Not a trace 
of her, not even a shred of clothmg was ever discovered to even hint 
at what become of the little tot, and to this day the mystery is im- 
penetrable. No trace of Indians was discovered, but the most 
plausible theory was that some prowling Indian picked the child up 
and carried it off. Never till the books and the mysterious of all 
ages are opened and all things revealed will the sequel be known. 
It may be that the secret has been revealed to the parents on the 
"other side" e're this. 

What would we think of a gang of men who would, in this day 

of quick transit, start for Pike's peak with their grub and outfit in 

push carts — expecting to push their carts all the way to Colorado 

and beyond? And yet that is just what a squad of men, headed by 

Porter, the wagon-maker, did here in 1850. It took them about 

two months to make the trip and it was reported that some of them 

struck it rich after arriving there. But all have struck the other 

shore e're this. 

290 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

Do you recall how we had to "hack it" to Ashley and some- 
times have to get out and pry the hack out of the mud and be half a 
day getting there and then wait for the train and hack the balance 
of the day. And now we can go in every direction twice a day with 
speed and comfort and get home for supper. 

We boys used to go swimming in the deep mill pond, where 
the Jefferson lumber yard now is. One evening some of us went 
there and found the lifeless form of Capt. W. A. Thomas in the 
pond. He had evidently been cramped and overcome by the water 
which was a little cool. We took the body to the old camp-house, 
where an inquest was held. The Captain was a Mexican war vet- 
eran and was loved and respected by everybody. He was "Bob's" 
father. During Doctor Plummer's term of office as Mayor of Mount 
Vernon, two of our town hunters were out all day hunting turkeys, 
which then lived in the timber. Failing to get any they were return- 
ing and seeing a lot of black turkeys at a farm house they stopped 
and inquired of the lady who came to the door, "Will you sell us a 
couple of those turkeys?" "Yes," said she, "we keep those black 
turkeys to sell to hunters." "And you won't give us away?" said 
the speaker. "No, indeed," said the lady. "What makes you think 
so? Doctor Plumber has bought half a dozen from me when out 
hunting and I have never given him away yet." "Here Jimmy, 
go out and give these boys a couple of them hunters turkeys — they 
are paid for. " 

Down at Pavey Chapel, named after General Pavey, after 
the colored people got things going they decided to have an ice- 
cream and strawberry festival. In making his announcements the 
preacher said, "Brudern and Sistern, we's going to have a cream and 
berry doin's next Friday night. De brudern will pay for de berries 
and de sisterns will give de milk." We were not invited and can 
not tell whether "de sisterns" responded or not. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 291 

Every community has its professional fishers. One of Mount 
Vernon's champions had been sitting on the banks of the creek all 
day and coming later displayed a couple of nice fish, but his wife saw 
they did not look like Casey Fork, and she said, "Colonel, I have 
been awful anxious about you. " 

"Why, what could happen to me?" 

Oh, I didn't worry about you, but it grew so late I was afraid 
the fish market would close before you go there to buy these fish." 

William Hicks, one of the first pioneers, was the first man to 
raise wheat in Jefferson county. He built his ranch on what is 
known as the Denny Robinson place, one and one-half miles west 
of town. Built what is now the bam, with lumber ripped out by a 
whip saw, and much of it is good and sound yet. He went to Ken- 
tucky, horseback, and returned with a bushel of wheat with which 
he sowed and reaped a good crop. He threshed it on a dry raw- 
hide and fanned the chaff out by throwing the grain in the wind 
and letting it fall back down on the hide. Then he saddled his 
horse and took as much as he could carry back to Kentucky to 
have it made into flour. Mr. Hicks was born in 1 777, during the 
Revolutionary war. He took part in the War of 1812, and passed 
through what is now Jefferson county on his way to join the army. 
He also took part in the Mexican and Civil wars — was a lieutenant 
in the regiment to which the writer belonged. He sold the first 
place and bought the Bill Grogan farm in McClellan township, 
where he died in 1865, aged eighty-eight years. None of his chil- 
dren are living except Mrs. Thomas B. Ford, of McClellan town- 

The first camp meeting was held at Union in the fall of 1 820, 
in charge of Rev. J. W. Walker, and others. Many and memor- 
able were the camp meetings at Old Union, under the old shed that 
used to stand there. The writer attending some big meetings there 

292 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

as late as '44 and '46, and afterwards at the Old Short Camp 
grounds, four miles east of town. The Holiness people have a splen- 
did camp ground eight miles south of Mount Vernon, near Bonnie, 
where camp meetings are held each year. 

We believe men may back-slide from their religion and policies 
and be renewed again, as this coincides with our observation of 
men, but it is not a course to be recommended. A man ought to 
satisfy himself that he is right before he espouses either religion or 
politics, and then he ought to be true to his choice — unless later 
events show him he was mistaken ; and then he ought to publicly ad- 
mit his mistake. In politics we have had two parties with occa- 
sionally a mushroom growth of reformers as side line. In the fifties 
we had the American, or Know-Nothing party, which for a time 
seemed destined to rule the country, but is soon subsided. In the 
nineties, the Farmers Mutual Benefit Asociation business sprang up 
and the farmers all over the west gave up their good money to get 
into it. Mount Vernon was the seat of its official organ, the Prog- 
ressive Farmer, and its circulation was enormous. But like the 
organs of the third parties before it and since, it flourished like the 
morning-glories or four-o'clock for a while, and then took its place 
in our newspapers' grave yard. 

In order that the next historian may have a "starting point," 
in regard to climate, weather, etc., we may state that the year 1908 
has been an unusually drouthy one in all parts of our country. In 
fact, a bit of history has been raked up to prove this drouth is the 
longest since the year 1 762 or one hundred and sixty-two years ago. 
There are no "old settlers" to tell about it, but history does tell us 
that no rain fell in that year between May 1 st and September 1 st. 
The people of the thirteen original colonies (for that was before the 
union was formed) had to send to England for food for their stock. 
The streams dried up, the fish died and stock suffered. It was ex- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 293 

tremely dry in the Ohio and Wabash valleys, which, however, 
were then practically unsettled. But notwithstanding this great 
drouth of the present year, the modes of cultivation are such that a 
fairly good corn, hay and vegetable crop has been raised and the 
farmers have realized big prices for whatever they had to sell. 

Jefferson county has produced some very bright and effective 
preachers and evangelists. In the beginning, some of the Caseys, 
Johnsons, Maxeys and others were true and faithful interpreters of 
the Scriptures, much like the evangelists of old, and though they are 
all gone their works do follow them. In later days we have had 
many other good ones, even in the present generation their voices 
have not been silent on the line of full and free salvation. Among 
them we mention two Shiloh boys, who without prestige or money 
have forged themselves to the front — Revs. J. M. Driver and Ed 
Fergerson. The former was the son of Judge Driver, who died 
but a few years ago. Young Driver ranks as one of the most elo- 
quent pulpit orators of the day. He secured a good education and 
has been listened to with delight by people in Boston and other 
eastern cities. He is now pastor of the People's church at Chicago, 
and is excelled by none in his eloquence and devotion to the cause 
of religion. The other, Ed Fergerson, as he is known, although 
not so highly educated, is a wonderful power in the pulpit, and es- 
pecially at camp meetings. He has calls from over half of the 
states of the Union to come and hold camp meetings. He came to 
the ministry from the farm, via a railroad laborer, and is known as 
the Railroad Evangelist. He is a wonder to many, but is thoroughly 
a man of God, with a promise of many days of usefulness. 

\V. Duff Piercy, a native of Jefferson, Indiana, and a son of 
the pioneer. Dr. J. B. Piercy, who died recently, is a young man of 
considerable ability and as a teacher and speaker, and bids fair to 
achieve good success in his chosen line of action. He has recently 

294 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

been placed on the literary lists, as a chautauqua lecturer, and will 
no doubt become popular as such, if de does not permit low grade 
politics to eclipse his higher ideals of righteousness. Until recently he 
has held the position of private secretary to Congressman Foster of 
this district, but claims that it was not only distasteful but unre- 
munerative, and we are glad to see him turn his abilities in what 
we consider a better direction. He is a Shiloh township production 
along with Rev. John M. Driver, and Evangelist Ed Fergerson. 

People have troubles — of course they do — some real ones, but 
more of an imaginary character. This is fully illustrated by an old 
sister, who in the class meeting used to reiterate the plea that she 
had more trouble than anybody. Oh, she had trouble, trouble, 
trouble, but she would always conclude by saying, "But thank 
God, most of my troubles never come to pass." Just so with many 
others. Let us not cross the bridges we have never reached, is the 

Then there is another great mistake people who are trying to 
be religious make. A reporter at one of our big meetings, on 
giving an account of a service held by Rev. Driver referred to above, 
said, "he uttered one of the most eloquent prayers ever delivered to 
a Mount Vernon audience." There it is — people seem to think 
that the average prayer is delivered to the audience, and how often 
is it the case? We do not know, but God does — better pray to 
the Creator and the true worshiper will be benefited, whether the 
audience is or not. As we have already said, if anybody wants 
to use these thoughts they are welcome to do so, for as Pilate said, 
"What we have vyritten — we have written." And we trust the 
same may do somebody some good. 

Comrade Vic Rosenderger, of McClellan township, boasts of 
being the first man to volunteer for the defense of the Union and 
the flag, after fortress Monroe was fired upon. He immediately 
went to Centralia and joined the Twenty-second Regiment, which 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 295 

was forming there. He served his three years out and re-enlisted 
and served two years more, making five years "or during the war. 
He is still hale and hearty at the age of seventy-three. 

All our Jefferson county people had forefathers, but Frank Fer- 
guson says he had four mothers, his own, God, step, and in-law. 

Senator Sam Casey, with a broad gauged laugh, used to tell 
a good one on Green Depriest; when the inhabitans all turned their 
hogs into the woods and let them fatten on the masts, acorns, nuts, 
etc. Sam said all the neighbors had hogs on mast but Depriest, 
but when hog-killing time was ripe, Depriest who lived in the hog 
ranches had all the hog and hominy he needed, although he never 
owned hogs. Finally a few of the neighbors went to him and said: 
"Depriest, don't bother our hogs this fall and we will give you a 
thousand pounds of meat when we kill them." Depriest hung his 
head and after studying a minute said, "make it fifteen hundred, 
and by-Dod its a dicker." And this carries us back to "them old 
hog-killing times," with all their joys edible and social. We feel 
sorry for the people to whom the joys of hog-killing time is a sealed 
book, when neighbors used to help neighbors and swap fresh meat 
for vegetables, etc., and the delights rising from trying out lard, the 
musical scruntch of the old sausage grinder; and gravy; and the 
cracklin'-bread, and Johnny cakes, on the hearth, then the stomach 
pleasing meals of roast ribs and boiled back-bones, kraut and dump- 
lings, ham hock and cabbage, pig-feet, souse, pumpkin-bread, etc.; 
yum, yum, go away with your fine-haired repasts, your French 
chefs, cafes, and foreign lingos, but give us the good old-fashioned 
"hog-killin' times." O me! O my!" 

Sing an old song of the hog-killin' time. 

No matter about meter or rhyme. 

Ask in the neighbors — all who are willing. 

And show that hog-killin's mighty good fillin'. 

296 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

Saturday night, last, one of our old citizens heard a noise in his 
chicken house. He grasped his gun and went to the chicken house 
door. "Who's there?" shouted our friend, but no answer. "Who's 
there? I'm going to shoot!" A trembling voice from the furthest 
corner, "Deed sah, dey am't nobody hyah,' ceptm' us chickens." 

We are satisfied that several Jefferson county fellows were cut 
out for capitalists, including ourselves, but unfortunately — or fortun- 
ately — as the case may be — the capital was "cut out" before we 
happened along. 


Asa Watson said he was never "skunked" out but once. He 
went down to the pasture branch, back of his place on the hill north 
of town to hunt his cow, when he suddenly ran on to a skunk. Asa 
tried to "renig" and run, but the skunk "took it up," and played his 
trump card much to Asa's disgust and as he "jerked up a chunk and 
hurled it at the skunk," he said he smelled seventeen distinct kinds 
of perfumery, each one worse than the cheap musk of the nineteenth 
century, which used to almost prostrate the boys as we went "nos- 
in" about among the sweet-scented girls. After the above incident 
Asa always gave Mr. Skunk both sides of the road when about to 
meet him. 

When the writer kept hotel at the northeast corner of the 
square, a tramp burglarized a room in broad daylight. He was 
arrested, taken before the grand jury, found guilty, pled guilty and 
Judge Boggs, who was on the bench, sentenced him to two years in 
the penitentiary— all the same day. But the funny part of it was, 
the Judge got the names mixed and said, "Two years will be the 
term of Mr. Wall in the penitentiary." This was the first and last 
time we have been sentenced, but the Judge corrected himself and 
the other fellow got the benefit of the sentence. This reminds us 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 297 

Helen's voice has long been still, 

Cleopatra sighs no more; 
Not a single shred remains 
Of the sashes or the trains 

Which the Queen of Sheba wore. 

Ah, but what care you and I ? 

They are dust, as has been said ; 
If they still could see the light. 
Which of them, I ask you, might 

Cause a man to lose his head? 

In fact, with the great increase of population big prices for 
produce have come to stay. Where eggs used to be a drug in the 
market they can not now be had for less than thirty cents per dozen, 
and butter twenty-five to thirty-five cents per pound, and other 
things in proportion. The day of cheap things has passed in the 
line of vegetables and clothing, and also we trust we may no longer 
have cheap men. 


All the older inhabitants will recall the dry summer of 1854, 
when there was no rain during the hot months, when the crops were 
a total failure and feed and bread-stuffs had to be hauled from a 
great distance at big prices. It was the worst drouth Jefferson coun- 
ty ever had. The writer was working at the Hagerman Brothers 
saw mill on the Richview road, near Jefferson City, and drove oxen 
to wagons, loaded with lumber from the mill to the site of Cen- 
tralia, which was then a barren prairie waste, without a house or a 
tree, having just been located and named. Now it is a place of ten 
thousand people, with fine houses and trees galore. By this sign 

298 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

(dry weather talk) which we do not care to repeat now. we well 
remember the dry summer of '54. There was one creek between 
the mill, and the site of Centralia that contained some stagnant 
water and into that pool those oxen would plunge at break neck 
speed in spite of all the loving words we could utter. Another 
very droughty summer was that of 1881 and corn was ninety cents 
a bushel and other things in proportion. And then the past summer 
of 1 908 was an exceedingly dry one, cutting, short crops and even 
killing pastures, so that prices are quite high. Were it not for the 
poultry crops and the cows, it would he hard sledding in the house- 
hold and in the barn this winter. 

After the drouth, the fall rains came and now the wheat 
fields "stand dressed in living green" and to the thinker there it more 
of life in these delicate tints than in all the joyous blooming of June 
roses. These generous fall showers mean something — yea much, 
to the tillers of Jefferson county soil. We plow, sow, plant and 
cultivate all to no purpose unless aided by the weather. Our com- 
forts depend upon "seasonable showers." City folks know noth- 
ing about the tragedies of life when creeks grow shallow, wells go 
dry, ponds dry up, and water tanks fall to pieces and springs cease 
to flow. Strange how humanity feels its kinship with all life at 
such a time. It has been well said that "rain is as necessary to man 
as to vegetables." A wonderful question is this — the relationship 
between humanity and the elements between history and meteorolgy 
this moisture in the air and plenty of blood in the veins, and yet we 
feel the constant need of these. Then from these comes the central 
thought of human existence, that "by the sweat of the brow, man 
may eat bread all the days of his life." God furnishes the sod, the 
sun, the air, the dew and the life, but man must furnish the labor, 
the sweat. 

From God to sod man reasoneth now. 
From sod to God mind evolved the plow. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL, 299 


"He who by the plow would thrive. 
Must either hold or drive." 

"Let us then be up and doing. 

With a heart for any fate. 
Still achieving, still pursuing. 

Learn to labor and to wait." 

In our sketch of the county we have aimed to touch upon the 
principal facts connected with it of a historical nature. It is not 
likely we have harvested all the items that might have properly been 
used, and yet we believe the older inhabitants will feel that we have 
tried to do them justice and that we have done fairly well, consider- 
ing the environments. Looking back over the intervening years we 
see a wilderness, almost uninhabited by white people, its solitude 
unbroken by a sound of civilization, we now see booming towns, 
productive farms, commodious farm houses and barns where there 
was log houses and stables. Instead of the old log school-houses 
and churches, we now see nice white school-houses and still larger 
churches, and all the modern improvements, and railroads and tele- 
graphs and telephones in every direction. The verdant wastes have 
disappeared and civilization has come to stay. And the energies 
which have made the present will not falter, for, 

"Right is right, since God is God, 

And right the day must win ; 
To doubt would be disloyalty. 

To falter would be sin." 



"Time like an ever rolling stream, 

Bears all its sons away." 
Nor need we write to tell the tale 

Our pen were doubly weak; 
Oh, what can idle words avail. 

Unless the heart could speak?" 


Abraham Lincoln's one hundredth birthday — February 12, 
1909, — was appropriately celebrated by the Mount Vernon and 
Jefferson county schools and the G. A. R. Post. Here, where some 
were disloyal enough to rejoice over the tragic taking off of the 
"old tyrant," as they called him, in 1865, there are none today who 
speak of him m other than words of commendation and praise. In 
fact, the name Lincoln has become a household word in Jefferson 
county — a name revered by all. 

Without a single exception, the last original old settler has 
taken his departure for the unexplored country beyond. Like Co- 
lumbus they have discovered a new country, a new heaven and a 
new castle, and no doubt they are amazed to find it a perfect realm 
of unexplainable beauty, with not resemblance to the barren wastes 
they encountered m coming to Jefferson county. If so, why should 
we wish them back again m this vale of shadows, this land of sick- 
ness, pain, death and bereavement. Neither should we envy them 
their home of love and beauty, but should look well to our own 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO.. ILL. 301 

lives — and see that we are approximating, as nearly as possible, that 
glorious life to come. 

As we have already said, there is not a man in sight who was 
here when we came, in 1842, and but very few children. Even 
the generation following the original pioneers are growing few and 
far between and the important thing for each one of us is to know 
where we are going. It may be so. 

Take the business men of the forties and fifties, the Johnsons, 
Caseys, Maxeys, and Paces and Andersons, of any and every name, 
Walter B. Scates, Downing Baugh, Judge Satterfield. Judge 
Dodds, George Mills, James Rahn,Ed Ridgway,Dan Baltzell, and 
a few others who were here when we came, and whose acquaint- 
ance and friendship we highly prized, and later. Doctor Green, 
W. H. Herdman, James B. Tolle, B. F. Wingate, Bob Castles, S. 
G. Hicks, the Yearnwoods, Samuel Schanks; and still later, S. T. 
Strattan, J. E. Fergerson, Thomas Hobbs, C. H. Patton, Col. G. 
W. Evans, C. D. Ham, Uncle Jerry Taylor, Judge Pollock, James 
M. Pace, R. A. D. Wilbanks, George H. Varnell, Albion F. Tay- 
lor, H. W. Seimer, and a great host who came and embarked in 
business after the war and after the railroads came — all departed — 
most of them have "crossed the bar." This list might be greatly ex- 
tended and amplified, but the heart grows very weary as we con- 
template the impossibilities of getting all the names of the missing 
ones. It is enough to know that — they are gone. 

And even the second and the third generations of "old set- 
tlers" are thinning down very fast. The following information which 
we were unable to obtain from the living friends of the departed 
we cull from the grave-stones and certainly they would not be mis- 
taken. But even here we find ourselves balked in our search for in- 
formation, for many of the graves of the first settlers have been 
leveled, overgrown and lost sight of, with not even a board or sand 

302 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

rock to mark the resting place of their dust. This is not at all com- 
mendable, but 'tis true, 'tis pity; 'tis pity, 'tis true. Among those 
who have left us are : 

Rev. Rhodam Allen, 1851; William Cole, 1853; in 1861, 
L. A. Gilbert; David Guthrie, 1859; in 1862, David Bullock, 
William Wood, Wiley Piper, John Dickerman; 1864, M. Piper, 
and ex-Sheriff Piper. In 1866, Rev. George W. Allen, and wife, 
J. R. Allen. In 1870, S. K. Casey and wife. In 1871, William 
Dodds, ex-Sheriff, Clerk, Judge, etc. 1872, Milton Kelley, James 
Gibson. 1873, Homer Thomas. 1874, Joshua P. Barrett; 1876, 
G. W. Smith, McCord Pate. 1877, John McGlothlin. 1879, 
William Malone, Thomas Bullock, WiUiam Beaty, I. W. May- 
field. 1881 , H. B. Newby, Warner White, C. T. Pace, John T. 
Johnson. 1882, Andrew J. Watson, Sukey Johnson. 1885, N. 
C. Pace. 1 886, Van Wilbanks. 1888, George Bullock. Henry 
Waters, Zadok Pace, J. Gilbert. 1890, Thomas L. Moss, D. C. 
Jones, Isaac Garrison, J. McGlothlin. 1891, W. D. Edgington, 
W. H. Summers, William Hill. 1892, I. C. Howe, Hezekiah 
McLaughlin. 1895, Jerry Taylor, J. S. Waite. 1897, John Gib- 
son, S. T. Stratton. 1899, George Wesley Johnson, C. D. Ham, 
William Blair. 1901, Philo Gilbert, W. B. Anderson. 1902. 
Reuben Moyer, I. Maxey, E. C. Pace. 1903, Mark Burroughs, 
John Waite. 1905, Capt. Henry Stephenson. 1906, Doctor Green, 
Henry Hobbs. 1 907, Claiborn Harper, S. F. Taylor. 


Soldiers buried in cemeteries near Mount Vernon who com- 
pose this roll of honor : 

Revolutionary war — Lloyd Ward, William Tong. 

War of 1812— A. B. Pence, B. N. Maxey, Asa Bateman. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 303 

Thomas Badgett, John McLaughHn, Joseph McMeen, Zach Har- 
vey, Nat Parker, Jonathan Guthrie, Hardy Ames, Joel Pace, 
James Johnson. 

War of 1832— Gilbert Lane, F. S. Casey, Josh Owen. 
George Bullock, Peter Owen, John R. Allen, H. D. Allen, Lewis 
Cole, J. R. Satterfield. 

Mexican war — J. J. Fly, Albert Hails, John Ames, Alfred 
Dickerson, Noah Johnston, paymaster. 

Great war 1861-65 — Charles Maxey, One Hundred Tenth; 
Mark Hails, Sixtieth; S. J. Galbreath, Eightieth; Benjamin T. 
Johnson, First Cavalry; J. M. Galbreath, Thirty-second; Logan 
McGrew, Hardin Wood, Fifth Cavalry; J. T. Shelton, Eightieth; 
George A. Collins, One Hundred Tenth; James Bishop, One Hun- 
dred Twenty-second; Joseph C. Galbreath, Eightieth; Frank Wil- 
liamson, Thirtieth; Thomas Maddox, Thirteenth; John Harlan, 
Sixtieth; George J. Pettit, Ninth Iowa Cavalry; S. Bruce, Eight- 
ieth ; Jonathan T. Ingram, Eightieth ; Frank Parker, Forty-fourth ; 
Ludwell Huston, Forty-first; J. Van Maxey, Eightieth; Zadok 
Galbreath, First Cavalry; Clinton M. Casey, Twentieth; Noah 
Johnston Bullock, Forty-fourth; John Bond, Sixtieth; David Terry, 
Forty-fourth; L. E. Gilbert, Forty-fourth; J. M. Slade, Forty- 
eighth; William H. Pavey, Forty- fourth ; Henry Piper, Forty- 
fourth; J. W. Rigsby, Eightieth; J. R. Ridgway, Eighth; W. R. 
Guthrie, Eightieth; Enoch Robinson, Sixtieth; Albert Guthrie, 
Forty-eighth; R. N. Taylor, One Hundred Tenth; A. A. Rice, 
One Hundred Tenth ; Abner Kite, Fourth Virginia ; A. J. Watson, 
Forty-fourth; Robert Guthrie, One Hundred Tenth; Thomas Mc- 
' Gill, Thirty-second; Joseph Guthrie, Sixtieth ; X. T. Markham, One 
Hundred Twentieth; J. W. Hitchcock, Eighteenth and One Hun- 
dred Thirty-second Indiana; James A. White, Sixth Cavalry ;C.W. 
Allen, Sixtieth; Riley Douthete, Arkansas Regiment; B. R. Cun- 

304 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

ningham. Eleventh; Alfred Dickerson, One Hundred Forty-third; 
H. W. Wells, One Hundred Thirty-sixth; James M. Fulwider, 
Forty-fourth Indiana; Josiah Fool, Forty-second; J. C. Grant, artil- 
lery; James Pool, Forty-second; William Jackson, Fifteenth Cav- 
alry; E. E. Lanham, One Hundred Eleventh; B. P. Reece, Third 
Cavalry; B. F. Bullock, Forty-fourth; John Waite, Forty-fourth; 
George Morgan, Thirty-third; G. W. Marteeny, Seventh; T. W. 
Bryant, Fifth Cavalry; William Pool, Frank Pool and Z. C. 
Maulding, Fortieth; Joseph Phillips, Fortieth; Lyman Coleman, 
William H. Hinman, Sixth Cavalry; Matt Rough, Sixth Cavalry; 
John B. Crowder, Forty-fourth; Newton C. Pace, Eightieth; Wil- 
liam H. Summers, Fortieth; John B. Coleman, Sixtieth; H. T. 
Waters, Sixtieth; William Hill, Eightieth; Sam T. Latham, Six- 
tieth; Zadok Pace, Eightieth; William Desollar, Forty-first; Ed 
Cox, Fourth Cavalry ; George A. Reed, Eighty-third ; James Wood- 
ward, Fifty-first; T. H. Hobbs, One Hundred Tenth; John Gib- 
son, Sixtieth; Henry Ellis, One Hundred Thirty-sixth; Robert 
Louth, Fiftieth; Nathan Melton, Eightieth; J. C. Branham, Six- 
tieth; William Ellis, Sixth Cavalry; William Hanks, J. S. Brooks, 
Forty-ninth ; Suel Tucker, Eighty-seventh ; E. V. Satterfield, Eight- 
eenth ; George W. Evans, Sixtieth ; F. A. Smith, Eleventh ; W. W. 
Anderson, Twenty-seventh Ohio; Edward J. Watson, Forty-sec- 
ond; William K. Collins, Forty-fourth; Leroy Brooks, Sixtieth; 
Henry F. Stephenson, Thirteenth Cavalry; Earl Palmer, Artillery; 
M. Tribble, One Hundred Tenth; Thomas A. Cantrell, One 
Hundred Twenty-eighth; David Baker, One Hundred Ninth; 
S. P. Shew, Twenty-second ; John R. Moss, Sixtieth ; Black Allen, 
Forty-fourth; Thornton Cofield, Eighteenth; L. Cuson, Forty- 
ninth; John G. Daniel, Eleventh Kentucky; S. Thompson Pace, 
Sixtieth; Hiram B. Allen, Thirtieth; Jack Murphy, Twenty-sec- 
ond; Sam Champion, Sixtieth; Wesley Ratcliff, Eightietli; John 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 305 

C. Pigg, One Hundred Tenth; J. J. Mulvaney, One Hundred 
Tenth; Thomas J. Owen, Sixtieth; James Dodson, One Hundred 
Tenth; George Stonecipher, John Stonecipher, Jacob Dodson, M. 
J. McKowen, J. R. Driver, Ed Anderson, Eighteenth. 

Note — When we stop to consider the length of the above 
list of comrades who answer to the roll call on the other side of the 
river, we are not surprised that the Grand Army of the Republic 
post IS sometimes short of a quorum. It indicates that soon, very 
soon, the last reveille will have sounded and the grand reunion will 
be complete on the banks of the river of life, where we may not be 
ordered, but led by love, in grand review before the great Com- 
mander of the universe. Never more may we meet these dear com- 
rades in this bleak world. This we know, but then comes up the 
old, old question, 

"shall we know each other there?" 

Most certainly — why not? — We know and have known each 
other here and shall we be less wise in that land of love and per- 
fect happiness? Nay, nay, a thousand times nay. The spirit re- 
tains its human form, although the form is not composed of decay- 
ing substance as in this world, but is terrestrial and ever new. The 
Scriptures clearly teach this wonderful truth. Hence it is that rec- 
ognition and identification must take place. Identity-recognition is 
what the heart craves, and the unbroken word of the Creator gives 
back the assurance — it shall be so. 

All the anticipated glories of the reunion on the other shore 
are heightened by this blessed assurance — we shall know each other 
there — nay more, our friends in heaven know us better than we 

know ourselves. 


306 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

But blessed thought ; we shall not always so 
In darkness and sadness walk alone ; 
There comes a glorious day, when we shall know 
As we are known. 
Yes, our fading memories here will be brightened in the other 
world, and instead of "seeing through a glass darkly" as we do 
here, we shall see our friends and our Redeemer face to face, and 
tell the story — "Saved by Grace." To us, this in no idle talk, for 
we know that our comrades, and loved ones in glory world are super- 
latively happy in the knowledge of what will occur when we reach 
that blissful abode. 
So let us then, 

"Be worthy of death, and learn to live 
That every incarnation of our soul, 
In other realms and worlds and firmaments, 
Shall be more pure and high." 

Going out into the township we find the same condition as in 
town, nearly all the early prominent citizens gone. A few of the 
latter-day business men are still around, like the Youngs, Davises, 
Damitz, Greenwalts and others in Farrington, Noble French, Doctor 
Gregory, the Woods, and the older lot are all gone. The Ander- 
sons, Wilbanks, Masons and others are gone from Elk Prairie, 
but some of the Wells, Dalbys, J. H. Crosnoe and a few of the 
others of the old stock are left. So in Blissville, Jesse A. Dees, 
is long since dead and William Hicks and Joseph Laur, but Isaac 
Robinson, the Gilberts, the Mannens, Greens, Johnsons and others 
are staying yet. Out in Casmar, a few of the old ones are left. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 307 

but the Champs, Harveys, Laceys, Kelleys, and others are missing. 
So in Field, John McConnell, WiUiam Clayborne, and others are 
gone, but the Hawkinses, Simmones, Whitlocks, and other still lin- 
ger. Down in Moore's Prairie, Charles Judd has come to town. The 
Wilkeys, Atchisons, McPhersons, Wilbanks, Rotrammels, Jesse 
Smith, A. Knowles, and most of the rest are dead. Up in Grand 
Prairie it is the same, J. W. Hails, Miller, Ratts, Payne, Henry 
Breeze are gone, but some of the Fouts, Beals, Kells, and last but 
not least our former fellow-townsman, Reuben Foust, still live. He 
is eighty-eight years old and says he may be good for a dozen more 
years. The story is the same in Spring Garden, Doctor William and 
Scarborough, Peavler and Thompson, Anglen are dead, but C. M. 
Brown and many other backswoods fellows still live. In Pendle- 
ton, L. D. Davenport, Quince Wilbanks, S. C. Guthrie, Thomas 
Holland, William H. Hunter, W. A. Hughey, Jesse Laird. J. W. 
Rentchler, all gone, but we have quite a squad of seedlingi left such 
as Alonzo Jones, the Estes, Jesse Catron, Baker, Cornelius, Grimes, 
Hughes, Metz, Miller and a host of others. Bald Hill township, 
the old, old, old lot is out and gone and the later lot is very 
much reduced in numbers. Some of the Mannens, Aliens Laurs, 
Lemons, and others of that class still linger. McClellan, A. T. 
Lacey, is the only real old, old settler left. Joseph Bradley, George 
Allen, W. A. Davis, Rightnower, McLaughlins, and others of this 
class are gone, but D. G. Jones, the Howes, Elijah Collins, the 
Fords, Rosenbergers, and a big lot are here to stay as long as pos- 
sible. And thus runs the whole history of the human race, not only 
in the townships, but the town and county and throughout the world. 
A number are still on top in Dodds township, John Bradford, John 
Arnold, Isaac Garrison, W. S. Bumpus and James and John Estes, 
Culli, C. M. Baugh, A. D. Couger, and others seem loathe to give 
up the struggle. In Rome township, Isaac Casey, M. D. Bruce, G. 

308 wall's history of jefferson cc, ill. 

L. Cummings, S. W. Carpenter, and a host of others have passed 
on, we still have the Tilfords, Wimberlys, Hutchinsons, J. M. B. 
Gaston, John R. Cunningham, R. F. Casey, Corrells, and others 
with us. In Webber township, James C. Maxey, and Dr. J. H. 
Newton, have come to town; A. Marlow, the Moores, Brookman, 
and a long string of others are gone, while Henry Marlow, aged 
eighty-six, Dulaney, the Clarks, the Devises, Harvey M. Maxey, 
Pulliam Scotts; the Browns, Martins, Adamses, and quite a squad 
of others remain. While in Shiloh township, Thomas C. Johnson, 
Jehu, J. D. Maxey, Thomas L. Moss, C. M. Casey, James R. 
Driver, Harper and a host of the Maxeys and Caseys are 
gone before, but Shiloh always has a reserve force even of old set- 
tlers to her credit, such as John F. Smith, Doctor Watson, William 
Sides, Lewis Seward, the Reeds, J. N. Pettit, the Paynes, Jeff 
Holtslaw, John and Jim Fergerson, and many others. Then in 
Pendleton township we have Joneses by the dozen, both alive and 
dead. John Brougher, Russell Brown and others are gone. In our 
township outside of Mount Vernon we find all the settlers missing, 
also James D. and Frank Robinson, David Warren, J. P. and 
Abraham Lizenby, Johnson and Sandford Hutchinson, Christopher 
Vaughn, John Waite, Elijah Wilkerson, Van Maxey, George Bur- 
ger, Doctor Frost, W. T. Frost, and a host of others of a later 


Already we have stated that not one of the original settlers of 
Jefferson county remains and that is true so far as one of discretion- 
ary age is concerned, and even as to any one of them born in the 
county. But the death of Robert Harlow on the first day of 1 909 
revealed the fact that he was brought to fhe county an infant in 
1818, the year the state was admitted into the Union and a year 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 309 

before the county was formed. His death brought out these facts 
which were not known before and perhaps would have remained 
unknown had he continued to hve, for he was one of those home- 
bodies, never mixing in with the pubhc or even letting it be known 
that he was "still in the land of the living," or rather in the land of 
the dying, for after all that is just what this earth is, so far as the 
physical man is concerned. He spent his entire life within a ra- 
dius of two miles of where he died, never appearing in public, ex- 
cept to attend the local Baptist church or vote the local Democratic 
ticket. He was a good quiet man, but cut no figure in county mat- 
ters. But he was the very last one of those who were here in 1819 
(and then only two years old), to leave us and take up his abode 
with the other pioneers. So we may now state — more positively 
than before that there is absolutely not a person living that was here 
when Jefferson county and Mount Vernon came into existence. 
And even as we write words come of still others departing for the 
foreign shore. 


Jesse H. Smith came to the Spring Garden settlement in 1829 
with his parents. Mr. Smith grew to manhood, filled well his sphere 
as a good citizen, and has passed on. His son, Kirby Smith, Esq., 
tells of a remarkable dream that his father had when a mere boy, 
which remained with him through life and was literally fulfilled in 
his death. He dreamed that he vividly saw the sun, moon and seven 
stars hovering over a spot of ground where is now located the Smith 
cemetery, near the farm so long occupied by his father — that one of 
the stars suddenly fell and buried itself in the earth where the grave 
yard now is and at intervals the other bright bodies fell and buried 
themselves in the same plot of earth, until there was but one left. 
Mr. Smith's interpretation of the dream was this: His father and 

310 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

mother were the sun and moon and his six brothers and himself were 
the seven stars. One by one they fell and were buried there until he 
alone was left, and just before his death he told his friends of the 
literal fulfillment of that boyish dream — saying that when his body 
was laid to rest in that cemetery the dream would be a reality — fa- 
ther, mother and the seven children reposing there side by side — 
awaiting the trumpet's sound. 

Mr. Smith used to tell of attending school in 1832 in the first 
log school-house built in that part of the county. It was located 
near the spring (after which Spring Garden was named) just this 
side of the town. Old man Softly resided there within our recollec- 
tion. A few years later another school-house was built at Toney's 
Point, which comprised part of Mr. Smith's farm later on. Ben 
Smith, a brother of Jesse, lived not far away, and added materially 
to the Smith population. He is still with us, and is a public-spirited 
citizen, and has a fund of pioneer experiences to relate "while you 
wait." He believes that the inner side of every cloud is bright and 

"He therefore turns his clouds about 
And always wears them inside out 
To show their silver lining." 

The Smiths are useful people, may their tribe increase. No 
sooner said than done, for just as we have finished writing the above, 
word comes that the stark has left twins at the residence of Attorney 
Kirby Smith, son of Jesse. 

J. W. Heck, one of the oldest citizens of Moore's Prairie 
township, Jefferson county, was born in the state of Virginia. Octo- 
ber 20, 1822; moved with his parents to Tennessee in 1837. In 
1861 he moved to Illinois, where he lived to the time of his death. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 311 

which occurred at the home of his son, Wilham, on Monday, Jan- 
uary ! 1 , 1 909. He was married in 1 854 to Nancy J. Long, who 
preceeded him to the great beyond four years ago, since which time 
he has made his home with his sons. To this union were born four 
sons and four daughters, six of whom are yet living : William and 
Thomas, near Belle Rive; Wesley, near Oklahoma City, Okla., 
Mrs. Rado Hughes, Belle Rive; Mrs. Mary Neal, near Frisco; 
Mrs. Barbara Sherley, St. Francis, Missouri. 

Josiah Willis, aged eighty-seven, died at his home in Bald 
Hill township, this county, January 12, 1909, and was buried in 
the Baptist church cemetery in Horse Prairie, near his home. 
He is survived by a widow and one son, Charles Raymond Willis, 
the fruit of a second marriage, seven children from the first marriage 
surviving, as follows: Mrs. J. A. Wyatt, Mrs. Mary Martin, Mrs. 
Martha Fitzgerrell, Mrs. Malissa Shanks and Henry and Sher- 
man Willis. Uncle Josiah Willis, a life-long resident of the 
county, was known as a man of great intelligence, taking an active in- 
terest in the affairs of the county and on several occasions filling 
positions of honor and trust. He was a volunteer soldier in the War 
of the Rebellion, being a member of Company A, One Hundred 
Tenth Illinois Infantry, in that conflict. He was about seventy-five 
years old when he was married the second time. 

Uncle Billy Greer lived to be one hundred and six years old 
and died recently. Aunty Handsacker, aged ninety-six, left for the 
golden shore during the closing days of 1 908. And, still the work 
of devastation and decay of all things go on and on, continually 
reminding us that this is not our permanent abiding place, but we 
seek a city that hath everlasting foundations made without hands, 
whose builder and maker is Architect of the universe. 

Word comes from Oklahoma that "Tom Joe" Maxey (one of 

312 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

our own Maxeys), the great singer, who many years ago, in connec- 
tion with the lamented Prof. P. P. BHss, taught singing schools in Jef- 
ferson county, has completed his "three score and ten years," and 
is now rejoicing in the glorious knowledge that "The way of the 
Cross leads home." Professor Bliss and his sainted wife, it will be 
remembered, had their sweet spirits crushed out in the Ashtabula 
railroad wreck years ago, and together they went sweetly singing to 
the "home beyond," he in the full flush of his magnificent manhood 
and she in her beauty and angelic spirit of womanhood. 

Then tell us not these sad events of earth end all, 
That so-called death ends God's power to save ; 

The spirit rebels at the curtain's fall 

That leaves us stranded in the grewsome grave. 

No cold lifeless grave can the spirit here confine. 
Nor keep the living souls of loved ones here ; 

No, no, God waves his magic wand o'er yours and mine. 
And wafts their spirits home through the upper air. 


'Tell us not in mournful numbers. 
Life is but an empty dream." 

This life is the prelude to the "real life" to come — the life beyond 
the tomb — that life the marvelous glories of which is absolutely un- 
explainable to these finite minds of ours — the "heights, depths, 
lengths and breadths of which it has not entered into the hearts of 
mortal man to conceive of." 

"Theres a murmur in the soul 

That tells of worlds to be. 
As travelers hear the billows roll. 

Before they reach the sea." 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 313 

Men may come and men may go; 

Old time knows no lagging. 
Some fate awaits the high and low; 

Let us keep from braggmg. 

Could we but know 

That land that ends our dark, uncertain travel.. 

Where lie those happier hills and meadows bright. 

Ah! if beyond the spirits inmost cavil 

Aught of that country could we sight 

Who would not wish to go? 

Some people in the world seem to know about all there is to 
know about everything, but not so with us. There are more thmgs 
in heaven and earth than was ever dreamed of in our philosphy, we 
have recorded a few things we do know in this book, but were the 
things we do not know, even enumerated in another book its size 
would far outsize this — in fact it would take volumes to tell all we 
don't know. But what we do know makes us glad. We are glad 
that we "know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fel- 
lowship of His sufferings." We are glad to know that if the house of 
this tabernacle were dissolved we have a building of God, a house 
not made with hands eternal in the heavens. We do not know just 
what heaven is, but we know it is a place, a prepared place, for you 
and all who will live for it. Oh how blessed is the knowing when 
the knowing is right. It is not the amount but the quality of the 
knowing that satisfies the human heart. 



Written for the Delection of Young and Old, and for the 
Benefit of the Next Jefferson County Historian, Who is Authorized 
to Help Himself to Whatever He May Find in This Volume Free 
of Charge. 

"I count this to be grandly true. 

That a noble deed is a step toward God — 
Lifting the soul from the common sod. 

To purer and broader view." 


From the Mount Vernon News, January 1 , 1 909 : — 

The literary department of the News is indebted to John A. 
Wall for a glance at a copy of volume 1 , No. 26, of the "Mount 
Vernon Sentinel," of January 16, 1857, a weekly paper published 
in what was destined to be the King City of Southern Illinois even 
at that early date, by John A. Wall and Joe V. Baugh, the latter 
being the present editor of the News, while Mr. Wall is at least 
temporarily connected with the same plant and engaged in collab- 
orating a history of Jefferson county soon to be published. Both 
youngsters were hovering around their teens when they launched the 
Sentinel and it is no disparagement to them to say that the publica- 
tion looks it, though there are several more verdant looking exchanges 
sent to the News after the lapse of more than half a century 






: 1 V 111 


wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 315 

than the Sentinel, typographically speaking and otherwise. The 
word "launched" in connection with Wall & Baugh's identity with 
the Sentinel, is a misnomer, as the Sentinel was established by the 
late T. B. Tanner and Thomas S. Casey to further a project in the 
interest of transferring the swamp lands in the county to railroad 
purposes. That accomplished. Tanner and Casey, both of whom 
afterward became judges of the Appellate Court of Illinois, turned 
the plant over to Wall & Baugh, who were "subs" in the office. It 
was an all-at-home print, as that was prior to the introduction of 
the "patent insides" adjunct to the country printing office. The 
Sentinel betrays some of the results of Mount Vernon being at that 
time and for years subsequent the seat of the southern grand division 
of the Supreme Court of the state, as several columns of the publica- 
tion are devoted to the cards of attorneys in every section of Egypt, 
most of the patrons in that line having passed to the court of final 

Mount Vernon is the home beautiful, the place of beautiful 
homes. None knows her but to love. Beautiful not only for situ- 
ation and environment, but lovely in her make-up, her everyday 
life, and her citizenship, especially the female part of it. Although 
up in the seventies, age has not dimmed the writer's vision, for see- 
ing the beauty by which we are surrounded. But, having been left 
behind by one of the fairest of fair maidens of lovely Mount Ver- 
non, after a joint pilgrimage of forty-six years, we can only look 
upon the fair maidens of this "city beautiful" as "forbidden fruit, 
and hence we have inclined our mind and heart to this (we think) 
beautiful history of our town and county as the bride and pride 
of our closing years. If we can bring gladness to the hearts of pil- 
grims here by this labor of love, and finally reach the "city beauti- 
ful" on the other shore, where joyfully awaits the beautiful ones 
gone before, that will be glory for us through all eternity. 

316 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO. ILL 

Since the cyclone the growth of the town has been phenomenal. 
New additions have been platted, and added to our incorporate 
limits until now we have a territory of two miles north and south 
and two miles east and west, and where, ninety years ago, a dozen 
families resided in rudely constructed cabins, today greater Mount 
Vernon, with dimensions enough for a full day's travel, with ten 
thousand prosperous and happy people most of whom are housed 
in comfortable houses and mansions. 

No city of its size excels Mount Vernon in religious and edu- 
cational advantages and there is none where better order is main- 
tained by the municipal authorities. 

Mount Vernon's healthfulness is one of the inducements of- 
fered to home-seekers that is steadily receiving increased recogni- 
tion. It IS of all Southern Illmois the favorite location for commer- 
cial travelers, numbers of whom have permanent homes here. Many 
wealthy people of St. Louis have purchased property for summer 
residences in and near the city and their number may be expected to 
be. largely increased after the completion of the electric line has af- 
forded them easy and rapid transfer to and from that city. 

The remark of the gentleman quoted at the opening of this arti- 
cle in reference to the moral sentiment pervading this community is 
easily accessible. 

The pioneer settlers were induced to settle here because of the 
natural loveliness of the country. What art can do to enhance and 
embellish the beauty of nature is exemplified on every hand. Mount 
Vernon has been famous for years because of the excellence and 
extent of her macadamized street system. In the past two pr three 
years the laying of brick sidewalks has been pushed, and today there 
is not a street in the city the entire extent of which has not been laid 
with walks of this character or such work is in progress. Shade trees 
line all thorough fares, in many cases of such size that their branches 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 317 

lap over the center of the streets. Grassy lawns between the streets 
and walks and surrounding the handsome modern built residences 
are kept green during the heated days of the good old summer time, 
by a liberal use of water for sprinkling purposes supplied by an ex- 
cellent water works system, and there are few more inviting spots on 
God's footstool than Mount Vernon during the heated term. 

The reader will naturally inquire what has produced all these 
important and desirable changes in Mount Vernon in so short a 
period of time? Why has the coal oil lamp given way to the elec- 
tric light? Why have the well and cistern of our forefathers been 
superseded by the magnificent water works plant? Why have the 
muddy streets been covered with brick and macadam? Why have 
the dangerous wooden walks been transformed into permanent and 
durable granite and brick? Why have these farms and commons 
been destroyed to make room for hundreds of new homes? Why 
have over three thousand five hundred new people found homes and 
profitable employment in Mount Vernon? These and a score of 
similar inquiries can all be answered by stating that Mount Vernon's 
three thousand souls of 1 890 were chock full of enterprise — the kind 
of enterprise required to build cities. They went down into their 
pockets and gave as a bonus twenty-five thousand dollars in cash to 
induce the location of a mammoth car-works plant in their midst, and 
having secured it, subscribed and paid for fifty thousand dollars of 
its capital stock. The same year they again went down into their 
pockets and drew therefrom fifteen thousand dollars in cash to in- 
duce the extension and completion of a second railway line into St. 
Louis, and all because they are continually adding additions to build- 
ing up the city. Paul has planted, Appolis has watered, and the 
fruits of their labors, under the providence of God, are falling into 
our hands. It was always so ; one plants and another reaps. Let 
us plant for the benefit and enjoyment of others, for instance we are 

318 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

realizing but little for our labor in searching out things old and new 
for this book, but, while we can not expect to reap the advantage of 
it, we may and do hope that when we have gone up higher, the 
coming generations may at least feel gratified in reading it. 

As a starting point for the next historian we will give a list of 
men now doing business around and adjacent to the public square 
m Mount Vernon today. 

Merchants — Boston Store, A. W. B. Johnson & Company, 
G. F. M. Ward & Company, Culli Brothers & McAtee, W. A. 
Stollar & Company, Hobbs and Pavey, O. Wallace. 

Druggists — Rackaway & Maxey, R. Buckham, Wilson & 
Ruthford, O. M. Waters, Rufus Bond. 

Shoe Store — William Sebel & Bond. 

Hardware Stores — R. L. Stratton, Shisler & Company, Hin- 
man & Matthews, Simmons & Coleman, Stull & Hersher, and 
Koons Brothers. 

Furniture and Undertaking — Fly Brothers, J. N. Johnson, 
Appleman & Compton, J. P. Vaughn. 

Opticians— W. P. Whitlock, R. G. Rutherford. 

Groceries — Howard Casey Company, wholesale; Hutchinson 
Brothers, S. G. Taylor, W. D. Moss, C. Pool, W. N. Grant. 
James Grant, Mrs. Hoolihan, Culli Brothers & McAtee, W. S. 
Summers, W. A. Stollar, Mike Heidler. 

The Ideal Racket Stores — J. S. Morrison, W. Slack. 

Clothing Stores^ — Boston Store, Fred Walker, D. H Wise, 
N. Levinson, G. M. F. Ward, Rosembaum, the Boston. 

Hotels — Mahaffy, Capitol, Grand, Dodson House and City. 

Restaurants — Homer Hicks, Greek, L. Klump, and Manions. 

Dentists — B. B. Tatman, L. Irous Rivenburg, Richardson, 

Confectioners — Frank Heiserman, the Greeks. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 319 

Book and News— R. L. Webb. 

Cigars and Tobacco — R. Rabor, George Junker. 

Butchers — P. Karsh, Grant Holcomb, F. Lenfelder. 

Jewelry— R. G. Rutherford, G. W. Reid, Mount Vernon 
Jewelry Company. 

Instruments and Implements — Watson Brothers, Manions, 

Photographers — James rlitchcock, A. B. Wolf, Harmon. 

Harness — Watson Brothers, D. Goddard, W. E. Jackson. 

Feed — Ira Stell, J. Carlyle. 

Bakers, Brownlow Hawkins, Stumpps, D. Archer. 

Barbers — Smith & Son, Sam Davis, R. Brown, M. May- 
berry, Charles Goodner, Trammel. 

The lawyers and doctors are given elsewhere. 

We shall not attempt to give a list of the grocerymen and others 
doing business in the outlying districts, as our space and time are too 
limited. We have three express offices, with J. W. Baugh, Homer 
Hobbs, and R. L. Webb as agents. 

Musical and Sewing Machines — John McPherson, an old 
timer who has composed and had published more Sunday school 
music than any man in Illinois. John is a hummer, as well as a 

Then we have three good banks, the Ham National, the Third 
National and the Jefferson State Bank, and a Light, Water, Gas 
& Heat office, with H. R. Kingman in charge. 

Among the big fires in Mount Vernon were the Phoenix block, 
in 1 868, the could court-house in 1871, the Stratton and West- 
brooks mill in 1884, near the same place where the large Johnson 
brick burned down last fall. The Pollock lumber yard, the Mount 
Vernon Mill near the Wabash depot, and afterwards the Howard 
Casey wholesale and storage house on the same spot, and the Wat- 

320 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

son Brothers fire of 1898. The Jefferson mill near the Louisville 
& Nashville depot and other smaller fires. Of course all of these 
bore no comparison to the destruction wrought by the cyclone. 

A company of farmers in the south part of the county are ar- 
ranging to incorporate a game preserve park of something less than 
a thousand acres of timber land, which is to be placed under the 
control of the State Game warden. It will serve the double purpose 
of being a timber preserve ranch also — a desirable consideration. 

Among the Mount Vernon industries is Miller's Steam Laun- 
dry, established by a Mount Vernon boy of foresight, and indus- 
try. From a small beginning he has built up the plant until it takes 
high rank among our industries. In addition to the business already 
named we have many other stores and shops in different parts of the 
city, all of which have their patrons, and are doing well. Many of 
them will be in shape for an extended notice before the next his- 
torian takes up the pencil. 

John W. Summers, son of the old miller Summers, "over the 
creek" has a nice little saw mill, corn and cider mill, at the northern 
edge of town, and it is doing a nice business. 

The ice plant up at the reservoir is filling a long-felt want in 
supplying the city with ice, besides shipping some. We might oc- 
cupy a chapter or two giving account of the various additions that 
have been added to the original twenty acres comprising the town of 
Mount Vernon, away back in the twenties, but it would be of no 
value or interest to any one, so we will let the additions, almost 
without number, take care of themselves. Suffice it to say that ever 
since James Gray and Storms (they were both White county men) 
to survey his big addition to the town away back in 1840, some- 
body with land they were too busy to work — have been lying off 
and adding the same to the corporate limits of Mount Vernon — 
some, more for the price than the good of the town — until the 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 321 

town has spread itself almost into the adjoining townships, and ex- 
pansion has been the order of the day. When Mount Vernon 
wants more territory it can be had, but more likely it will come be- 
fore it is asked for. Everybody wants to see the city grow and 
prosper, but it will be well if we "citify" as we grow, rather than 
have a big lot of territory without city privileges and utilities. The 
work of building sidewalks, and having the streets made is pro- 
gressing all right, but the work already "cut out" should be finished 
up before we make other additions. Let the good work of brick- 
ing the streets and making the granitoid walks continue. Every 
brick laid, every foot of granitoid walk laid is the praise of the 
(at the time much abused) administration of Mayor S. H. Watson 
and the council acting with him in 1892, who bricked the public 
square and laid the first granitoid sidewalks and fully inaugurated 
the system in our city. The progress now being made along this 
line shows that somebody had to be bold enough to take the re- 
sponsibility of inaugurating every reform, and everybody now is 
ready to praise Watson's administration for going ahead, regard- 
less of opposition. Let the good work go on. Of churches and 
schools our city is amply supplied to suit the tastes and dispositions 
of all. Any city the size of Mount Vernon that gives as much 
money as we do for church and school purposes can not fail to be 
up-to-date along these lines. It is enough to know that Mount Ver- 
non has twenty churches and five extensive school-houses — and no 

Mount Vernon has a fine Chautauqua association, composed 
of some of the best citizens of the place which holds its annual as- 
semblies in the Casey grove near Oakwood cemetery, each year. 
These assemblies are growing in popularity and are looked for- 
ward to with anxiety. So far the meetings have been held in a large 
tent, but the association is contemplating securing more ground and . 


322 wall's history of jefferson cc, ill. 

putting up buildings suitable for the meetings and the campers. It 
is the general wish that they may succeed. These chautauquas are 
popular, educational and elevating, and should be made a perma- 
nent part of our civilization. 

In looking through the Illinois Blue Book, we find that most 
of the counties have soldiers' monuments erected, paid for bv popu- 
lar subscriptions. This is very commendable, and we trust the next 
Jefferson county historian will be permitted to refer to a monument 
of this character in the public square of Mount Vernon, and thus 
show that the descendants of our brave soldiers are not unmind- 
ful of their patriotic services in behalf of the country and its flag. 
By all means, give the next writer a better chance than we have had 
to sound the praises of Jefferson county along this line. Let Jef- 
ferson county be up-to-date. At this point we wish to respectively 
submit this suggestion: 

In our search for facts for our new Jefferson County History, 
which was far and wide, and in briefly sketching the life and services 
of the late Gov. Zadok Casey, the thought impressed itself on our 
mind that the Zadok Casey monument (a creditable one) now 
standing in Old Union graveyard, should be given a prominent posi- 
tion in our city cemetery — Oakwood — where it could be looked after 
and looked upon by a grateful community, and where visitors may 
see that we have not forgotten our "illustrious departed" — we will 
not say "dead," for such men as Zadok Casey — "There is no 
death; these stars go down to rise upon some fairer shore; and 
bright in heaven's jeweled crown they'll shine forever more." 

We think this change eminently appropriate because Oakwood 
occupies part of the Zadok Casey homestead, and because Old 
Union, with all its sacred memories, has become a back-number, and 
is no longer regarded as a city cemetery. In view of these facts, we 
respectively suggest to our fellow citizen, Mr. Sam Casey, and 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 323 

Capt. Samuel L. Dwight, of Centralia — the surviving grand-sons of 
Governor Casey, the beauty of the change. They certainly would 
have the endorsement of the people of Mount Vernon. Besides, 
such removal, would probably be followed by the establishing of 
other monuments of "old-timers" like Governor Anderson, Major 
Johnston, Harvey T. Pace, Joel Pace, and other prominent "old 
settlers" — in Oakwood cemetery, which is the proper place for the 
monuments of Mount Vernon's early citizens. 


If there is one thought more than another it is that we might 
be able to impress upon the minds of the boys of today the great 
importance of making good men of themselves. Men whom Jef- 
ferson county will be proud of as their names are recorded in the 
next Jefferson county history. It is not wealth that makes the man, 
it is intrinsic worth — seek then to be great in true moral value, in 
exemplary unselfishness and sterling honesty and you will have 
cause to thank God, and yourself for the result. Millionaries are 
today under the ban. Their attitude is apologetic and exculpating. 
They are on the defensive. Even the fact of a man's great wealth 
renders him ineligible to the presidency of our Republic. The 
people are opposed to elevating the immensely rich and now is the 
time above all others for the good young man to come to the front. 
When we read the story of Lincoln and his early struggles we feel 
instinctively that destiny was unnecessarily cruel and harsh. His 
great spirit bore the deep scars of those early struggles, even to the 
grave. No man had a past more depressing, nor a future more hope- 
less and gloomy. The same may be said of General Grant at the 
outbreak of the Civil war, and Henry Wilson, Senator and Vice- 
President, was born in the vagrant community of tinkers, of un- 

324 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. . 

known paternity. Morton, the war Governor, and the Senator 
from Indiana, said the happiest moment of his life was when as a 
boy he marched into his native village at the head of a band, play- 
ing a key bugle, while he was a hatter's apprentice. Garfield and 
Sheridan, the barefooted boys on the tow-path of canals; Andy 
Johnson, the tailor; Blaine, the country school teacher; McKinley 
and hundreds of others put to naught the modern idea that ambi- 
tious youth must have big money before entering public life. Honor, 
courage, independent thought, true manhood and truth are the 
things needed. 


Of course we are not expected to discuss even county finances, 
let alone national finances in the county history, and yet as Jeffer- 
son county is part and parcel of this great country, it is not out of 
the way to say that there is a feeling among the people that our 
national expense bill is much too large, and its continued increase 
is viewed with alarm. There is danger always of being too fast 
when the spirit of expansion seizes the minds of law-makers. Of 
legitimate expenses none need complain, but when it comes to mak- 
ing the biggest canal in the world outside of our own territory, mak- 
ing extensive deep water ways within our borders, improving all 
our rivers, enlarging our already world renowned naval fleets, ex- 
tending rural mail routes, into sparsely settled regions, building 
public buildings in towns throughout the country, etc., while at the 
same time we are paying the hundreds of thousand persons in the 
employment of the government — and especially the "spend thrifts," 
that compose the national Congress — all at the same time — pru- 
dence, economy and honesty seem to cry out and call — a halt. With 
a deficit of over one hundred and fifty million dollars per annum 
staring the people in the face, no wonder they fear and tremble at 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 325 

the prospect, but unless the law-makers slow up, there is danger 
ahead. The people, however, are glad to think their new Presi- 
dent fully comprehends the situation and that with his power as 
President, he will greatly obstruct the dangerous work of Congress. 
The new President shows signs of true statesmanship, far above the 
average of our former executives, and the people are looking to his 
administration with a longing desire for better things. 

The same condition of things above indicated apply to Illi- 
nois and Jefferson county, and there are multiplying evidences that 
not only as individuals but as municipalities, states and government 
we are living too fast, and incurring too many responsibilities. 


Arrangements are being made to test the virtue of irrigation 
in Jefferson county, under the direction of the water company, and 
it is believed that it will work wonders in the way of increasing the 
productiveness of our uplands — -especially in the line of tomato 
raising, for the use of our tomato preserving factory. The Snider 
Preserve Company has leased the factory for the ensuing year and 
are contracting to use the product of a thousand acres of cultivated 
tomatoes. Anything that will increase the output of our production 
and meets the increasing demand for grain and vegetables is desir- 
able, and it is a good sign of future prosperity for our farmers to 
see them reaching out for all improvements that come along. As 
we have already said the whole fabric of our industrial life depends 
upon what the farmer is doing and what the soil is producing. Use 
every means to make it bring forth abundantly. 



A government experiment station to test the efficacy of irriga- 
tion in increasing the productiveness of Southern Illinois soil is to 

326 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

be established at Mount Vernon under the direction of Samuel For- 
tier, chief of irrigation investigations of the Agricultural Depart- 
ment at Washington. 

The water is to be provided by the Citizens, Gas, Electric & 
Heating Company from its reservoir four miles north of Mount 

No attempt to overcome the effects of the drouth by irrigation 
has been made generally in Southern Illinois, though there has been 
some use of irrigation in the raising of garden produce. 

We speak of these things here for a history that simply refers 
to the primative methods of the past and does not commend the 
advancements of the present and suggest and urge improvements 
in the future is but little worth to the present or future generations. 
We plead for a wide-awake, progressive, "citizenship, up-to-date not 
only in moral, education and religious life, but in all matters per- 
taining to the improvement of the race, of our stock, and the soil 
from whence everything springs, at the behest of nature and the com- 
mand of God. Let us all agree to a forward movement — onward 
and upward, toward the light of the natural sun and the son of God. 
Then will our mission be fulfilled and we, too, become the sons of 


Humanity is a queer compound, and yet under the same cir- 
cumstances, the same environment, it is much the same the world 
over. It is a queer compound in this, that the times change and 
mankind changes with them. Back in the times of which we write, 
people who had colds, soaked their feet in hot water and got well. 
Now they have the grip, take modern medicines and feel "poorly" 
all summer. Then they had sore-throats, wrapped an old sock 
around it and went to work next morning, but didn't have any ton- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 327 

silitis with surgical operations and two weeks in bed. Then they 
had the stomach ache, took castor oil and was all right next day, 
now they have appendicitis and four weeks in the hospital. Then 
they worked, now they labor. Then they wore underclothes — if 
they had them — now they wear lingerie. Then they took their 
meals at the home kitchen, now they go to the cafe. Then people 
went crazy, now they have brain-storms. Then they had love in a 
cabin, now we have divorce and alimony. Yes the times and terms 
have changed, and people change with them, and yet, after all it is 
the same kind of flesh and blood, with the same streaks of love and 
its opposite — selfishness — that they had in the olden times — except 
perhaps — selfishness has outgrown love — a condition that certainly 
ought never to exist in a land of personal liberty like this. For this 
is a realm of individuality — a land of personal identity. There is 
an individuality, a personality about every person we meet that dis- 
tinguishes him or her from every other person in the world. And 
this fact emphasizes our responsibility for every act we perform dur- 
ing our brief existence here, irrevocably fixes our status in the 
future life. For if we are individually and personally known in 
this land of shadows where we only "see through a glass darkly," 
how surely shall we be known in the land of clear vision and eternal 
brightness — that home of the individual soul and beautiful person- 
ality, where there are prepared mansions and eternal joy for all 
who will accept them? What a glorious thing is our individuality 
our human and divine personality? 


In one of our western cities recently, was brought to the front 
another phase of Americanism that needs to be more carefully stud- 
ied. It was an unfortunate collision between bigotry and fanati- 

328 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

cism, in which a pohceman and three others, including of course, the 
innocent by-stander, were killed or hurt. The leader of the fanatic 
band was attempted to be arrested on complaint of the people who 
did not endorse the manner in which they were conducting worship, 
and who did not have faith in their plan of salvation. Feeling that 
they were protected by the laws of our Constitution, they even went 
to the limit of resisting arrest and this brought violence from both 
sides, with the result above. The moral appears to be this;except 
in cases of fanatical lawlessness and cussedness, reaching the point 
where forbearance ceases to be a virtue, it would be better to stick 
fast to the doctrines handed down to us from our fathers, and let 
all men worship God according to the dictates of their own con- 
science rather than attempt to prescribe how they shall worship. 
We are glad to say that Jefferson county allows all men to worship 
God according to the dictates of their conscience. 

And now we close this brief history. In doing so, we can 
but hope that greater material prosperity and greater moral excel- 
lence may come to this old town or city of Mount Vernon and to 
its individual citizenship in the coming years until it shall excel in 
all things, both moral and commercial. As we close the narrative 
of the doings of so many gone before, we can not but feel, that 

"Sure the last end 
Of a good man is peace ! How calm his exit! ^ 
Night dews fall not more gently to the ground. 
Nor weary worn-out winds expire so soft. 

Behold him in the evening-tide of life — '. 

A life well spent— whose early care it was 

His riper years should not upbraid his green ; 

By unpreceived degrees he wears away; 

Yet, like the sun, seems larger at his setting. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO.. ILL. 329 

High in his hopes and faith, look how he reaches 
After the prize in view, and Hke a bird 
That's hampered, struggles hard to get away; 
While the glad gates of sight are wide expanded 
To let new glories in, the first fair fruits 
Of the last coming harvest. Then, oh then! 
Each earth-born joy grows vile or disappears. 
Shrunk to a thmg of naught. Oh, how he longs 
To have his passport signed, and be dismissed. 
'Tis done, and now he is happy ! The glad soul 
Has not a wish uncrowned ; e'en the sad soul 
Rests, too, in hopes of meeting once again 
Its better-half never to sunder more. 
Nor shall it hope in vain ; the time draws on 
When not a single spot of burial earth 
Whether on land or in the spacious sea. 
Must give back its long-committed dust." 

Mount Vernon and Jefferson county, not unlike other communi- 
ties inhabited by genus homo, have had all kinds of people, espe- 
cially two kinds, good and bad — the people on the one hand who 

Act badly — cater, strive and plan 

And wallow in the mire; 
And though they shun the frying pan. 

They leap into the fire. 

While on the other hand by far the greater number of our people 
have trained with the other crowd, who said, 

"Let us go, brothers, go. 

To the Eden of heart-love. 
Where the fruits of life gro.w. 

And no death e'er can part love. 

330 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

Where the pure currents flow 

From all gushing hearts together. 
And the wedding of the Lamb 

Is a feast of joy forever — 
Let us go, brothers, go." 

May heaven choicest blessings ever rest upon every reader of 
this book. 

And though the world seems drear as you idly roam, 

And life seems but a mystery; 
Turn your thoughts toward our heavenly home. 

Read the Bible— and Wall's History. 


We have certainly said enough to convince the most pessi- 
mistic that we are not looking for the hole in the doughnut, not yet 
a hole in the ground, nor in the bottom of the sea, but have joyful 
anticipations of a palace in the skies. We agree that this is not so 
bad a world as some would like to make it, though whether good 
or bad depends on how we take it. But we all know it is not our 
permanent abiding place, however many blessings it may bring us, 
we still have the assurance within the "best is always yet to be." 
The joy we may have here is but a transient shadow of the bright 
home beyond. It is not "death" so called that woos our spirits to 
that fair land but the "more abundant life" that beckons us to scenes 
on the further side of the grave. That that is called "death" is 
simply transition — a getting out of the swaddling clothes of earth 
and being dressed in the beautiful "garments of praise" a foresaking 
of the flesh-pots of earth for the bountiful menu of heavenly manna 
— the bread of life. A bidding farewell to all that would molest or 
make afraid for a "fullness of joys and pleasures forever more." 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO.. ILL. 331 

So there you have the faith of a Christian optimist. Will you not 
cast away your pessimism and meet us there ? 

And now we commit the future history of Jefferson county to 
the next historian, expressing the hope that he (or she) may be able 
to do much better than we have been able to do. We found the 
county in 1819 with less than five hundred inhabitants — ninety years 
later we leave it with a guaranteed population of thirty-five thou- 
sand. We found it without schools, churches, courts, or functions 
of any kind — without improvements of any kind — without tele- 
graphs, railroads, telephones, or even wagon roads — without towns, 
villages or even comfortable dwellings — with everythmg in a chaotic 
state, and apparently with a very misty prospect of anythmg better 
in the future. But now we turn it over to this wide-awake genera- 
tion, with all these wonderful developments in full bloom, and fresh 
buds still coming on every stalk, and shall expect the next half cen- 
tury to far outrival the ninety years of which he have feebly written. 
And finally: where are the birds of gay plumage that sang 
so sweetly in these vast forests a hundred years ago? Where are 
the forests? Where are the good people who cleared away the for- 
ests and converted the whole into a scene of beauty and usefulness? 
Are they not in the far-away climate of pure delight? Do they not 
beckon to us from the beautiful "mansions not made with hands 
eternal in the heavens," to come and enjoy with them that "far 
more exceeding and eternal weight of glory" that await all who 
would bask in the marvelous light of the Son of Righteousness, that 
far outshines the natural sun, forever more ? 

Shine on, oh glorious light, shine on. 

While we pursue the upward way. 
Assured that we shall each and every one 

Reach those realms of everlasting day. 



"Over the river they beckon to me — 

Loved ones who've crossed to the further side. 

I shall know the loved ones who have gone before. 
And joyfully sweet will the meeting be, 

When over the river, the peaceful river, 
The Angel of Death shall carry me." 

And now we have come to the closing chapter of our history, 
just as we are approaching the closing days of our earthly existence, 
the crossing of the bar — the parting of the ways. Soon, we shall 
reach the time and the clime where we shall all be equal — where 
king and peasant, rich and poor shall stand equal in the presence 
of the Ruler of the universe, and surely that which is the common 
lot of us all must be for the common good. In the light that comes 
beyond what difference does it make whether this earthly existence 
was passed surrounded with the comforts of earthly wealth, or in 
struggling for the necessaries of life, as has been the lot of most of 
us. Happy, if we view this change — this departure, as did the 
great apostle Paul, when he said, "the time of my departure is at 
hand ; I have finished my course ; I have kept the faith ; I have fought 
the good fight; henceforth there is laid up for me a crov^Ti of life, 
which the righteous Judge will give me" and then, remembering that 
he had not lived for himself alone, he added — "and not to me only, 
but to all who have believed on His name" or had faith in His ever- 
lasting words of truth. 

■ wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 333 


We close this brief history of the county by a brief 
History of Our Own Life. 

Life's years speed sure and fast, 

I near the end; 
The mile-stones all are past — 

Three-score and ten. 
I started with a crowd — 

Where are they now? 
I lost them on the road — 

I know not how. 

Soon my crowd declined, 

I know no more; > 

They were not left behind; 

They're gone before. 
The way was full joy. 

Of hope and bliss, 
Of pain and woe-annoy. 

And happiness. 

Among the girls, I wed 

A gladsome one. 
Before us all cares fled — 

Our race we run ; 
But she grew weak, dear love. 

And said, "I go 
To that bright home above 

Where there's no woe." 

334 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

Life's journey has been brief — 

That is to say — 
'Was morning, noon and eve — 

But one short day. 
I scan the record, aye. 

Yes, I am right — 
The journey of a day — 

Morn, Noon and Night. 

I am looking up to see 

My friends at rest. 
They smile and beckon me 

God knoweth best. 
My days are almost o'er. 

What need I care — 
The hand that leads here 

Will lead me there. 

And those I leave behind 
May catch the song, 

And with their hearts refined 
May hasten on 

To that blest place on high — 
That home above — 

There's peace and joy — no sigh- 
But perfect love. 

My departure is at hand — 

The faith I've kept; 
WTiile in this weary land 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 335 

Oft I have wept 
I fight the fight of faith, 

I wait alone 
To hear the voice that saith 

My son, come home. 

Father, I hear Thy voice — 

Gladly I come 
To make Thy home my choice. 

Thy will be done. 
I bid farewell to earth 

No more to roam; 
I have the second birth — 

I am safe at home. 

Yours in faith, hope and love, 

John A. Wall. 


Our Jefferson county historian, born in poverty, 1836, in 
Saline county, Illinois, was early bereft of parents and brought to 
Mount Vernon at the age of five years and "bound out" to Eli 
Anderson, and his old maid sisters, who kept the old Mount Vernon 
Inn. As usual with children of this kind, he had task-masters and 
was "bossed to the limit." Having been familiar with slave help 
the family in which he spent his early life made him feel the sting 
of servitude and it is no wonder that as he grew to manhood he 
hated slavery with a holy hatred. By the articles binding him until 
he was twenty-one he was to have received a good education and a 

336 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

horse, saddle and bridle, but Anderson, the party of the first part, 
having died and the good education not being forthcoming, at the 
age of seventeen, he feeling that the horse and saddle and bridle 
would be like the education, he quit the job and went to work on 
the Illinois Central Railroad, which was then being built; after- 
wards working in a blacksmith shop, and then helped Uncle Johnny 
Bogan in the Jeffersonian office. He "rolled" for the first paper 
printed in Mount Vernon in August, 1 85 1 . His printing office edu- 
cation was much like his schooling, a day in and a day out, but still 
he received more education in the office than he did at school. In 
five years in connection with others he has taken charge of the office, 
and for thirty years thereafter was connected editorially and print- 
atorially with many papers in Southern Illinois, having edited papers 
at Salem, Pinckneyville, Marion, Carbondale, Cairo, Coulterville, 
Benton, Mount Vernon and Cape Girardeau, Missouri. In Au- 
gust, 1 86 1, he dropped the pencil and stick and went to the front to 
help save the Union and the flag. He was in three days' battle at 
Pea Ridge, at the battle of Perryville, Kentucky, and was in a 
bayonet charge, was severely wounded in the battle of Stone River, 
and taken prisoner and suffered in Libby and other prisons for 
some months, before being exchanged. He came home in 1863, 
and started the "Unconditional Unionists" with which to fight 
rebels while he was unable to use implements of warfare. 

In 1889 Mr. Wall was made postmaster at Mount Vernon 
and served nearly five years with satisfaction to the people and 
credit to himself. After that he served as assistant postmaster for 
nearly nine years, making his service in the post-office fourteen 
years. He served the Republican party in two terms of the Legis- 
lature as doorkeeper of the house, and sergeant-at-arms of the Sen- 
ate. He served one term as assessor of Mount Vernon township and 
did the entire work himself. He was often placed on the party 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 337 

ticket to "fill-up" and always reduced the opposition majority. He 
is now nearly seventy-three years old, and is rounding out his life 
by writing the History of Jefferson County and awaiting his final 

In 1 859 he was married to Miss Milly F. Watson and they 
lived happily together until 1905, when she departed for the bet- 
ter land, leaving him to follow. Their children are Angus, de- 
ceased; Al J., foreman of the Republican office at Kankakee; 
Emma, widow; and Bessie, at home, and his grandchildren are as 
follows: Ethel and Walter, children of Angus, deceased; Lola, 
Leland, Dorris and Donald, children of Al J. at Kankakee; and 
Mildred, daughter of Emma, at home. 

Mr. Wall is a Methodist in his religious affiliation., and a mem- 
ber of the Grand Army of the Republic and an Ancient Odd 

Mr. Wall has always considered himself in the servant class — 
if by effort, he could be helpful to others. When he was a "bound" 
boy he felt that he was a servant ; so, when he helped to saw wood 
and help make ties for the railroad ; so, when he became a disciple of 
Faust ; so, when he took the obligation to love and cherish the bride 
of his choice; so, when he volunteered to fight for his country and 
defend its flag; so, when he returned from his military successes and 
took up the peaceful duties of citizenship; so, when he took upon 
himself the obligations of a Christian soldier, and so, when he under- 
took to compose this Jefferson County History. Labor is part of his 
religion. His opinion of the man who will not work is expressed in 
the following lines: 

The man who don't toil and spin 

To meet his earthly need. 
May think he's in the lily class; 

But he's just a measly weed. 


338 wall's history opjefferson co., ill. 

Or, if he toils for self alone — 

No thought of golden rule. 
His selfishness unmans him prone — 

He's less helpful than a mule. 

He contends that — 

"Life is real, life is earnest. 

But the grave is not its goal ; 
Dust thou art, to dust returnest. 

Was not spoken of the soul." 

Viewing life from an earthly standpomt alone, it sometimes 
seems unsatisfying — ever trifling — but from the Christian's Mt. Pis- 
gah of Faith, Hope and Love — with life's duties well performed on 
the one hand, and the joys yet to come on the other, we can joyfully 
bid farewell to mortality, as we go "Sweeping through the gates into 
the city," singing as we go: 

Life's labor done, we bid farewell. 

Our weary souls set free. 
From carking cares, we sweetly tell — 

The best is yet to be. 

Yes, dear Jeffersonians, come and 

Grow old with me! 

The best is yet to be. 
The last of life for which the first was made. 

Our times are in His hand 

Who saith, "A whole I planned. 
Youth shows but half; trust God, see all, nor be afraid!" 



^Ze^curri/ <:^ (?.^-e^ 




The Pace family is one of the oldest families in the state of 
Illinois. It is an English family, and traces its history back about 
four hundred years to England, where one of its members was a 
member of the British Parliament. About two hundred years ago 
two brothers of the family came to America, one locating in the 
southern part of the now United States, the other in New York. 
The descendants of these brothers are distributed in almost every 
state in the United States. It is thought by members of the family 
that the Declaration of Independence was signed by one of them, 
where the name is usually taken for William Paca, the original of 
the Declaration of Independence having been examined by one of 
the family, and the name having been written in such a manner as 
to cause him to belive it was William Pace instead of William Paca. 
Some of the family then resided in Virginia. The Paces have 
taken part in all the wars in which this country has been engaged. 
Two brothers, Joel Pace, Sr., and John Pace, were in the Revolu- 
tionary war, both from Virginia. The latter was a captain in that 
war. Two sons of said Joel Pace, Sr., being Joel Pace, Jr., and 
Joseph Pace (twins), were in the War of 1812, and in General 
Harrison's command. Members of the Pace family were also in 
the Mexican war, and on both sides in the Civil war, some wearing 
the blue and some the gray, also in the Black Hawk war, the war 
with Spain and in the Philippines. The older members of this fam- 

340 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

ily who settled in Jefferson county, Illinois, came from Virginia and 
Kentucky, a portion of them locating here before the county was 
organized. The oldest member who located here was the above 
named Joel Pace, Sr. His family was composed of John M. Pace, 
Joel Pace, Jr., Joseph Pace, Spencer Pace, William West Pace, 
Thomas East Pace, his sons, and Mary Atwood (wife of James 
Atwood), Martha Goodrich (wife of Nathan Goodrich), Milly 
Baugh (wife of Judge Downing Baugh), and Frances Watson 
(wife of Dr. John W. Watson), his daughters. 

Joel Pace, Jr., was the first County Clerk, the first Circuit 
Clerk and the first County Judge of Jefferson county, Illinois. His 
family consisted of Charles T., Williamson C, Newton C, Addi- 
son M. and Samuel F., his sons; and Eliza McCreary (wife of 
Warren McCreary), Letitia Haynes (wife of James Haynes), 
and Isabella F. Pavey (wife of Charles W. Pavey), his daughters. 

Charles T. Pace was a successful merchant in Mount Vernon, 
Illinois, and is now deceased. Williamson C. Pace now resides in 
Ashley, Illinois, and has been successful as a physician and surgeon 
and business man; was Mayor of Ashley, Illinois, and was surgeon 
of the One Hundred Tenth Illinois Infantry in the Civil war. 

Edward C. Pace, now deceased, was a banker in Ashley, Illi- 
nois, and was once the Democratic nominee for State Treasurer of 
Illinois, and was prominent in the Masonic Order. 

Newton C. Pace, now deceased, was a successful merchant, 
and was Mayor of Mount Vernon, Illinois, and was captain in one 
of the Illinois regiments in the Civil war, and with his brother-in-law, 
Charles W. Pavey, was for about two years held by the Confed- 
erates as prisoner of war. He was wounded in assisting to carry 
one of his wounded comrades from the battlefield. In doing so he 
took a risk his duty as captain of his comapny did not require, but 
was actuated by his kindness and consideration for those under his 
command. He was also prominent in the Masonic Order. 


Addison M. Pace has for many years been a resident of Kan- 
sas. Samuel F. Pace and Mrs. Eliza McCreary and Mrs. Letitia 
Haynes are now deceased. Isabella F. Pavey is the wife of Gen. 
Charles V/. Pavey, who was State Auditor of Illinois, and they are 
residents of Mount Vernon, Illinois. 

Joseph Pace, the twin brother of Joel Pace, Jr., was the first 
County Surveyor of Jefferson county, Illinois. His family consisted 
of Samuel T. Pace, J. Thomas Pace and Warren G. Pace, his 
sons; and Susan F. Dillingham, Pamelia Dillingham, Margaret 
Downey, Elizabeth Allen and Mary A. Pace, his daughters. Sam- 
uel T. Pace was in the Sixtieth Regiment, Illinois Infantry, in the 
Civil war, in which he had an arm so badly shot it had to be ampu- 
tated. He was a successful business man and is now deceased. His 
brother, J. Thomas Pace, became eminent in his profession as a 
physician and surgeon, and is now deceased. Warren G. Pace died 
in infancy. Two of the daughters of Joseph Pace, Mrs. Elizabeth 
Allen and Mary A. Pace, now reside in Mount Vernon, Illinois. 

Spencer Pace, William West Pace and Thomas East Pace 
departed this life many years ago. William West Pace went from 
Jefferson county to Salem, Illinois, and was a prominent man there, 
and was Clerk of one of the Courts of Marion county. Some of his 
children and their descendants now reside in Salem, Illinois. His 
youngest daughter, Josephine, is the wife of J. E. Bryan, a lawyer 
of Salem, Illinois, a cousin of William Jennings Bryan. Two wid- 
owed daughters also reside there. 

John M. Pace was the oldest son of Joel Pace, Sr. He came 
from Virginia to Kentucky and from Kentucky to Jefferson county. 
Ilhnois. His family consisted of Harvey T., George W., John H. 
and Joel F., his sons; and Amelia Guthrie and Amanda Rogers, 
his daughters. 

Harvey T. Pace was the oldest son of John M. Pace. He 

342 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

was a successful merchant and business man, and for many years did 
the largest business of any merchant in Mount Vernon. Illinois, 
and was in general merchandising there without intermission from 
1 832 to the date of his death, in 1 876, on the same corner, being 
where the Third National Bank now stands. He was a progres- 
sive man and held offices of trust. He was president of the first rail- 
road company in this county, and was three times elected a member 
of the Legislature of Illinois, serving in that body with Lincoln and 
Douglas. His wife's maiden name was Nancy Bruce, a native of 
Wilson county, Tennessee. Her ancestors participated in the Revo- 
lutionary war, and War of 1812, one being with General Jackson 
in the battle of New Orleans. Harvey T. Pace and his wife were 
zealous members of the Christian church, and he bought a church in 
Mount Vernon, Illinois, in 1 854, for the use of that denomination, 
which was used by it from that time till his death. He also built at 
his own expense a Ladies' Seminary and maintained it for sometime. 
His sons were James M., George W., William H. and Aurehus 
N., and his daughters, Martha E. and Mary E. 

James M. Pace was the oldest son of Harvey T. Pace, and 
was a lawyer and business man. He was public-spirited and pro- 
gressive and was ever ready and willing to do anything that would 
promote the welfare of the city of Mount Vernon and of the county 
and state. He was elected to many offices of trust and confidence. 
He was the first Mayor of the city of Mount Vernon, Illinois, the 
first County Superintendent of Schools of Jefferson county, which 
position he held for eight years, having been twice elected to this 
office, and was Master in Chancery of this county. Police Magis- 
trate of Mount Vernon, Illinois, and was for about twenty years a 
member of the Board of Education of Mount Vernon, a portion of 
the time being its president, and was a member of a board which 
maintained a seminary here for four years, of which Rev. Thomas 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 343 

H. Herdman, who afterwards was president of McKendree Col- 
lege, at Lebanon, Illinois, was principal. When County Superin- 
tendent of Schools he held the first teachers' institute in Jefferson 
county and was largely instrumental in establishing the graded 
schools in Mount Vernon. He was a charter member of the Knights 
of Pythias Lodge in Mount Vernon, and was a member of the In- 
dependent Order of Odd Fellows. He did as much as any other 
person in securing the building of the first railroad in this county, 
being now the Louisville & Nashville Railroad. It was strongly op- 
posed, and was submitted to a vote of the county. He contributed 
of his own means and time in assisting to carry the proposition, and 
did so from no motive whatever except for the general good of the 
community. He had surveyed at his own expense a railroad route 
from Mount Vernon to Benton, in Franklin county, which substan- 
tially now forms a portion of the Chicago & Eastern Illinois Rail- 
road. His life was an unselfish one— generous, kind and courteous 
to all — and he was permitted to live to see these enterprises for 
which he so faithfully and earnestly labored all consummated, dem- 
onstrating the correctness of his foresight and judgment, having de- 
parted this life July 18, 1907, at the age of eighty years. He mar- 
ried Eleanor C. Vaught, a daughter of Thomas F. Vaught, who 
was a merchant of Shawneetown, Illinois, and also County Clerk of 
Gallatin county, Illinois. She, from her kind and gentle manner 
and disposition, was a suitable companion for her husband, and 
they were permitted to round out life's day in this county, whose 
history they had assisted in making and upon which they had left 
their impress for the good and elevation of the community in which 
their lives had been chiefly spent and together they entered life's 
evening twilight, the portal to perpetual day, she having departed 
this life February 16, 1907. 

James M. Pace had two sons, William T. and Thomas V., 

344 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

and a daughter, Virginia M. The son, Thomas V., died in infancy. 
The daughter, Virginia M., is the wife of Louis H. Bittrolff, and 
now resides in Mount Vernon, Illinois. The other son, William 
T. Pace, is a lawyer, practicing his profession in Mount Vernon. 
He was three times elected County Judge of Jefferson county, and 
also acted as County Judge of Wayne county, this state, for a time 
while County Judge of Jefferson county on account of a vacancy 
occurring by the death of the County Judge of Wayne county. He 
was an alternate delegate-at-large for the state of Illinois to the 
Democratic National Convention in 1896, when William J. Bryan 
was first nominated for President. 

Of the other children of Harvey T. Pace, one, William H. 
Pace, died in youth from injuries received in falling from a tree. 
Another, George W. Pace, departed this life when a young man, 
just entering upon a prosperous business career. The other son, 
Aurelius N. Pace, resides in Montgomery, Alabama. Of the 
daughters, one, Mary E., departed this life in childhood; the other, 
Martha E., is the wife of Dr. Hiram S. Plummer, and resides in 
Mount Vernon, Illinois. 

George W. Pace, Sr., a brother of Harvey T. Pace, after he 
became grown moved from Mount Vernon to Salem, Illinois. He 
was a successful merchant and business man, and was elected a 
member of the Constitutional Convention of 1 847, of Illinois. Two 
of his sons are deceased. George W., Jr., died when quite a young 
man. The other deceased son, Granville R., was a prominent mer- 
chant and was Mayor of Salem, Illinois. The sons living are Har- 
vey T. Pace, Jr., a business man of Salem, and Oscar H. Pace, re- 
siding in Mount Vernon. He also had two daughters, Tabitha J. 
Badolett, now deceased, and Ophelia E. Tryner, now residing in 
California. George W. Pace, Sr., married Tabitha J. Rogers, who 
formerly resided in Jefferson county, Illinois. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO.. ILL. 345 

John H. Pace, a brother of Harvey T. Pace, was a prominent 
merchant, and at the time of his death was Police Magistrate of 
Mount Vernon, Ilhnois. Two of his daughters are deceased, one 
dying in childhood, the other, Cora A., married William D. Tabb, 
who is also deceased. They left surviving them two daughters, Ger- 
trude and Louise. The other daughter of John H. Pace is Gussie 
Manning, wife of William Manning, of Howell, Indiana Of the 
two sons of John H. Pace, one, Willis A., departed this life when 
about grown. The other son, Robert F. Pace, is a prominent busi- 
ness man residing in Mount Vernon, this state. 

A portion of the time he has taken an active part in politics, 
and has been Master in Chancery of Jefferson county and postmas- 
ter of Mount Vernon. 

The other son of John M. Pace, Joel F., and a daughter, 
Amanda Rogers, are deceased. The other daughter, Amelia Guth- 
rie, now resides in Mount Vernon with her son, John P. Guthrie. 

The Pace family were never clannish in any manner. Some 
were zealous members of various church denominations. Locally 
most of the denominations to which they belonged were the Christian, 
Methodist, Baptist, Presbyterian and Episcopal. In politics they 
belonged to different parties, some ardent Democrats and others as 
loyal Republicans. As a family they have evei been progressive, 
conservative citizens, of firmness and of strong character, boldly and 
fearlessly upholding that which was elevating and conducive to the 
welfare and best interests of the community, the state and nation. 
And they, with other families who located in Jefferson county, about 
the same time they did, have played well their part in making a his- 
tory for Jefferson county, Illinois, of which they feel a just pride; 
and with those families, in life's battles, can truly say, "We have 
kept the faith. We have founght a good fight." 

346 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 


A distinguished member of the Ilhnois Bar with a reputation ex- 
tending beyond the limits of his state and for many years one of the 
leading citizens of Southern Illinois, the subject of this sketch holds 
distinctive prestige among the representative men of Jefferson coun- 
ty and is pre-eminently one of the influential factors in the public 
life of the city, which he makes his home. The family to which 
Hon. Norman H. Moss belongs is an old and prorninent one and 
from an early day has been closely identified with the development 
and progress of Jefferson county and influential in various lines of 
thought and activity. Several of its members have risen to high 
positions in professional and political circles, but to the subject is 
due the credit of adding to the prestige of the name and to the 
brightness of an escutcheon which shines with peculiar luster in a 
community long noted for the high standing and distinguished 
achievements of its public and professional men. 

Norman H. Moss is a native of Jefferson county, born four 
and a half miles southwest of Mount Vernon in McClellan town- 
ship, on the 25th day of March, 1856. He comes of a long line of 
sterling ancestry, inherits many of the sturdy characteristics for 
which his family has long been distinguished and is a splendid type 
of that high order of American manhood and citizenship which have 
contributed so much to the progress of the country and solidity and 
popularity of its institutions. Capt. John Riley Moss, his father, of 
whom a sketch appears elsewhere, was a pioneer of Jefferson county, 
a farmer by occupation and one of the leading men of his day in 
this part of Illinois. Permelia C. Allen, wife of Captain Moss and 
mother of the subject was born in this county, November 23, 1835, 
and died on March 1 6th, of the year 1 908. She was the daughter 
of Rev. George W. and Eliza Allen, the father a pioneer minister 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 347 

of the Methodist Episcopal church, and for a number of years a 
prominent farmer and pubhc-spirited man of affairs, who held 
various official positions and achieved an honorable reputation for 
his activity and influence in promoting the interests of the community. 
Mrs. Moss was early instructed in the tenets of Methodism and from 
her childhood lived the life of an earnest and sincere Christian, tak- 
ing especial delight in assisting the needy, and leading souls to the 
better life. For about two years prior to her death she was totally 
blind, despite which heavy affliction, however, she continued to be 
bright and cheerful and contributed to the enjoyment and happiness 
of all who came within the range of her influence. Hers was indeed 
a grand and beautiful poem of duty faithfully and cheerfully per- 
formed and her descendants mention her name with something of 
the profound love and respect which the pious pilgrim feels in the 
presence of some sacred shrine. 

Norman H. Moss is the second of a family of six children, the 
names of his brothers and sisters being as follows: Angus I., of Shiloh 
township; Mrs. E. W. Neal, of Knoxville, Tennessee; Dr. Harry C. 
Moss, a practicing physician, of Albion, Illinois; Mrs. Rufus Grant, 
of Mount Vernon, and Addie May, deceased, who married Dr. 
John T. McAnally, of Carbondale, this state. Of the early life 
of the subject little need be said as it was devoid of incident or ex- 
perience of striking nature, having been spent on the farm^ where 
in close touch with nature, in a daily routine of duty, he acquired 
the bodily strength and independence of mind which subsequently 
developed into well rounded manhood and enabled him to success- 
fully grapple the problems by which he was confronted from time to 
time. His preliminary education acquired in the district schools was 
supplemented by a course in the Illinois Agricultural College at Ir- 
vington. He subsequently entered the Southern Illinois Normal 
School at Carbondale, where he made commendable progress in the 

348 wall's history 6F JEFFERSON CO.. ILL. 

higher branches of learning. On leaving the above institution young 
Moss turned his attention to teaching during the winter of 1 879-80 
at Toney Point, and the following year taught the first term in what 
is known as the Arlington School, Moore's Prairie township, Jef- 
ferson county, Illinois, meeting with encouraging success as an in- 
structor, but using the work as a stepping stone to something better 
and more permanent. 

Having early manifested a decided preference for the law, a 
profession for which a naturally strong and analytical mind pecu- 
liarly fitted him, Mr. Moss in 1 880 entered the office of Hon. Seth 
F. Crews and George M. Haynes, a well known and successful 
legal firm of Mount Vernon, where he prosecuted his studies with 
such diligence and satisfaction that on May 5, 1882, he was ad- 
mitted to the bar and at once began the practice of his profession at 
the county seat. Without entering into a detailed review of Mr. 
Moss's legal career, suffice it to say that from the beginning his prog- 
ress was not only commendable but rapid, and it was not long until 
he forged to the front rank among the rising attorneys of the Jef- 
ferson County Bar and won his full share of professional patronage. 
His was the standard by which younger lawyers seek to be meas- 
ured in the field of legal learning, eloquence, general attainments and 
industry which hestitated at no obstacles however numerous and 
formidable, and a faithfulness to the cause of clients which inva- 
riably gained their confidence and paved the way to higher achieve- 
ments and success. 

Mr. Moss possesses a peculiar charm of voice and manner 
which render him especially strong as an advocate ; but he is no less 
distinguished as a counsellor, his familiary with the science and 
principles of law, his independent character of mind, his quick per- 
ception and sound judgment and above all his well known integrity, 
eminently qualify him to act the part of a discreet and trusted ad- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 349 

viser. It is a combination of these and other equally as strong quali- 
ties which has secured to him the respect and esteem of the bar and 
the confidence and commendation of the public. 

In 1884 Mr. Moss without any solicitation on his part, was ap- 
pointed State's Attorney to fill out the unexpired term of Hon. W. 
N. White and so ably and satisfactory were his official functions dis- 
charged that at the expiration of the term he was the unanimous choice 
of his party for the office but failed of election by reason of the over- 
whelming strength of the opposition. Politically he is a stalwart Re- 
publican, and for a number of years has been one of the leading 
factors of his party in Jefferson county, besides taking, since 1 889, 
an active and influential part in state politics and assisting very ma- 
terially in the various victories gained in the meantime. He has long 
been recognized as one of the ablest and most judicious politicians 
in Southern Illinois and in campaign years his services are in great 
demand, his judgment, foresight and ability as an organizer being 
especially appreciated in party counsels. On various occasions he 
has been honored by nomination for important official positions, the 
first time in 1 884 for State's Attorney, as already indicated, in 1 886 
for County Judge and again in 1888 for State's Attorney. Al- 
though unsuccessful in these different contests, he carried much more 
than the strength of his ticket and succeeded in reducing the normal 
Democratic majority to the lowest minimum in the history of the 

From 1 890 to 1 892 inclusive Mr. Moss served as secretary of 
the Republican committee of the old Nineteenth Congressional Dis- 
trict, and in the latter year was nominated by acclamation for Con- 
gress, but as usual in the district lead a forlorn hope, though making 
a brilliant canvass and causing wide spread uneasiness in the ranks 
of the enemy. In 1890 he was appointed under President Harri- 
son's administration Supervisor of census for the Eighth District, 

350 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

comprising twenty counties, and discharged the duties of the posi- 
tion with his accustomed care and abihty, winning the approbration 
of his superiors and favorable comments from the head of the de- 
partment. In 1893 he was elected City Attorney of Mount Ver- 
non, which office he filled with credit to himself and to the entire 
satisfaction of the public for a period of two years and in 1 898 he 
was further honored by being elected from the Forty-sixth District, 
composed of Jefferson, Wayne, Franklin and Hamilton counties, to 
the lower house of the General Assembly. 

Mr. Moss proved an able and judicious legislator and was 
recognized as one of the strong and influential members of the House 
during his incumbency. He at once became one of the Republican 
leaders of that body and in addition to serving on a number of im- 
portant committees took a conspicuous part in the general delibera- 
tions, displaying marked ability as a debater and as a member of 
the "Steering Committee," which virtually determined the course of 
the majority, he impressed his personality upon his associates and 
took the initiative in a number of important preceedings. He ren- 
dered especially valuable service on the judiciary, corporations, elec- 
tions and claims committees, where his influence was duly recognized 
and appreciated, also succeeding in passing a number of bills of vital 
interest to the people of the state and was untiring in his efforts to 
promote the interests of his constituents, the majority of whom irre- 
spective of party allignment reposited the utmost confidence in his 
ability and judgment and expressed themselves as fully satisfied with 
his course. Additional to the various official positions indicated Mr. 
Moss from time to time has been called to other places of responsi- 
bility and trust, all of which he worthily filled and added to his repu- 
tation as a capable and painstaking public servant. In 1 889 he was 
commissioned Special Bank Examiner to investigate the affairs of 
the first National Bank, of Arkansas City, Kansas, and later was 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 351 

appointed by Hon. Charles G. Dawes, Comptroller of the Cur- 
rency, receiver of the same institution, also of the First National 
Bank, of McPherson, Kansas, legal and financial ability of a high 
order being required in both instances. Suffice it to state that in 
these important and responsible trusts, his course was eminently 
satisfactory to the authorities and creditable to himself. 

Mr. Moss in August, 1903, was appointed by Governor Yates, 
chief clerk of the Southern Illinois Penitentiary, and after holding 
the position until 1905 was appointed Parole Commissioner of the 
same institution, which place he still holds. 

He is an honorary member of the Cook County Republican 
Marching Club of Chicago and for a number of years has served 
on the Republican Central Committee of Jefferson county, and for 
four years (last past) was a member of and chairman of the Con- 
gressional Committee of the Twenty-third Congressional District. 
He IS also an enthusiastic member of the Sons of Veterans, in 
which organization he has held various official positions including 
that of Judge Advocate of the Illinois Division and delegate to both 
State and national encampment of the order. At the present time 
his membership is with Camp No. 1 00, Chicago, but his interest in 
the organization has made his name a familiar sound throughout the 
bounds and he appears as much at home in one camp as another. 
. Mr. Moss is a charter member of Camp 1919, Modern Wood- 
men, of Mount Vernon and also belongs to Jefferson Lodge, No. 
121, Knights of Pythias, in which he has passed all chairs besides 
taking the grand lodge degree, and attaining a prominent position 
in the higher work of the order. In addition to the above fraternal 
societies he is a Mason of exalted rank, holding membership with 
Mount Vernon Lodge, No. 31, Ancient Free and Accepted Ma- 
sons, H. W. Hubbard Chapter No. 160, Royal Arch Masons and 
Patton Commandery No. 69, all at Mount Vernon, Illinois. 

352 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

By reference to the foregoing review, the life of Mr. Moss 
appears to have been a very strenuous one, filled to repletion with 
duty ably and faithfully performed and characterized throughout 
by a devotion to principle, above reproach and a sense of honor 
defying adverse criticism. He has a capacity for large undertakings 
and his professional success, political activity and influence and offi- 
cial integrity, have not only commended him to the people of his own 
county and state, but have given him a reputation much more than 
state wide and an honorable name among the leading men of his 

Mr. Moss is a man of fine sensibilities and a high sense of jus- 
tice and honor, and it has ever been his aim to be on the right side 
of every question with which he has had anything to do and to lose 
sight of self or selfish interests in the noble endeavor of striving for 
the greater good of the greater number. 

Broad-minded, public-spirited, fervidly patriotic and taking 
liberal views of men and affairs he has impressed his individuality 
upon the community as an enterprising large-hearted, progressive 
American citizen of the best type, while among his immediate friends 
and neighbors, he will always be regarded as a man without pre- 
tense and a courteous gentleman whose integrity and loyalty will 
bear the closest and strictest scrutiny. 

An interesting chapter in this history of Mr. Moss is his happy 
domestic life which dates from September 4, 1889, when he was 
united in the bonds of wedlock with Miss Mary McAnally, whose 
birth occurred at Decaturville, Tennessee, on the I I th day of Sep- 
tember, 1 860, but who at the time of her marriage was living in the 
city of Carbondale. Mrs. Moss is the daughter of John F. and 
Martha E. (Haley) McAnally, natives respectively of North Car- 
olina and Tennessee, and has borne her husband three children, 
whose names and dates of birth are as follows : Robert Allyn, April 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 353 

6, 1893; Norman McAnally, August 12, 1895; and Eugenia, who 
first saw the light of day November 1, 1897. Mr. and Mrs. Moss 
have a commodious and pleasant home in Mount Vernon, where all 
their children were bom, and in ntany respects their family circle ap- 
proaches the ideal. No efforts are being spared to rear the sons and 
daughter to useful and honorable lives, and if the example of their 
parents and the pleasing environment of the home have the usual 
mfluence it is eminently proper to predict for these young people a 
bright and hopeful future. Mr. and Mrs. Moss are members of the 
First Methodist Episcopal church of Mount Vernon and manifest 
a deep and abidmg mterest in all good work under the auspices of 
the same. Mr. Moss has been a member of the official board of the 
church for a number of years and displays the same interest in the 
affairs of the congregation as he does in his secular enterprises. 


America is known as the land of the free and the home of the 
brave. It is the land of opportunity, not for the chosen few, but for 
all. It is this that has endeared it to the hearts of its people, and has 
developed on this continent a country that is the marvel of the world. 
Although the demagogue charges that wealth rules, yet no fact is 
more evident than the one that merit wms recognition above every- 
thing else. The man that lays hold of opportunity and makes for 
himself a peace in society is readily respected, regardless of birth, 
station in life, or ancestry. A glance over the pages of our history 
reveals a host of examples of this type of men, and in the industries 
and the commoner walks of life we find the places of responsibility 
occupied by men who have "made good," as we say, in the posi- 
tions that have been thrown open to them. 

354 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

This is pre-eminently the home of the "self-made man" and a 
striking exam.ple is found in the person of J. T. Turner, manager of 
the Central Union Telephone Company, of Mount Vernon, Illinois. 

Mr. Turner was born at Lebanon, Laclede county, Missouri, 
on April 18, 1878. His father, \V. R. Turner, was a native of 
Bowling, Green, Kentucky, and is now living on his farm in Macon 
county, Illinois. Our subject's grandfather was a native of Ken- 
tucky also, and left that state for the West, starting overland with a 
team of oxen. He reached Missouri and there g&ve up the trip, 
settling upon a farm where he ended his days. Mr. Turner's 
mother, Celia (Barker) Turner, was born in Arkansas, and passed 
to her reward at Bolivar, Polk county, Missouri, August 8, 1905. 
She was the mother of six children, all of whom survive. They are: 
Mrs. Ida Browning, of Bolivar, Missouri; Berry E., of Macon, Ill- 
inois; Mrs. Roxie Henderson, of Topeka, Kansas; J. T., our sub- 
ject; Mrs. Maud Schaumleffle, of Belleville, Illinois; and Joseph 
A., of Denver, Colorado. 

Mr. Turner lived with his parents until he was thirteen years 
old, and received his education in the district schools near Lebanon, 
Missouri, in the vicinity of which was located the parental home. 
He was a boy of steady habits and of industrious turn of mind, and 
these characteristics have enabled him to forge forward in spite of 
difficulties and discouragements. From 1891 to 1893 he worked 
at farming in Polk county, Missouri, and during the next two years 
was similarly employed in Henry county, same state. In the fall 
of 1895 he came to Illinois, locating at Wanensburg, in Macon 
county, and continued at farm work there until 1 897. 

In the spring of 1898 he concluded to abandon farming for a 
while, and accordingly went into the employ of the Wanensburg 
Telephone Company. He felt a keen interest in this line of work, 
and readily adapted himself to the necessities that confronted him. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 355 

He retained his connection with this company for three years, and 
then became engaged in construction work for the Central Union 
Company at Decatur, Illinois. After about one year's employment 
at this location, he was transferred to Taylorville, Illinois, and con- 
tinued there until April, 1 903, at which time he resigned and came 
on a visit to his home at Mount Vernon. While here he was of- 
fered the position of inspector of the Southern Illinois Telephone 
Company, which offer he accepted. A few months later his meri- 
torious work attracted the attention of the directors of the Citizens 
Gas, Electric & Heating Company, of Mount Vernon, and he was 
tendered the position of foreman of their construction work. This 
he accepted, and held until March, 1904, when he took the in- 
spectorship of the Central Union toll line at Taylorville, 
from which appointment he was later transferred to Effingham, Illi- 
nois, and given the management of that office. In 1906 he was 
made manager of the Central Union office of Mount Vernon, which 
office he is filling at the present time. Through all these years he 
has advanced steadily and has won for himself recognition and pro- 
motion through efficiency and strict attention to business. 

On May 10, 1903, Mr. Turner was married to Miss Bessie 
Bradford, who was then chief operator in the Mount Vernon office. 
She is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. B. M. Bradford, both highly 
respected residents of the county. This union has been blessed with 
one child, Clara Louise, who was born September 2, 1905. 

Mr. Turner is a member of the Modern Woodmen and of the 
Knights of Pythias, filling the office of Chancellor Commander in 
the latter order. He is well known in the community and allies 
himself with the progressive element, assisting materially in promot- 
ing the advancement and welfare of the city. 

356 wall's history of jefferson cc, ill. 


The family is the first institution and lies at the base of every- 
thing that is good in society and it is well to study the history of our 
family and try to improve wherein our ancestors may have done 
amiss in the past, or at least maintain the record of sobriety, pa- 
triotism and honor handed down to us. It ought to be an inspiration 
to every one to know he has descended from a long line of upright, 
intelligent men and women. Vicious indeed is the one who would 
bring reproach intentionally upon a name that has been maintained 
in honor for many generations, and it is always a great pleasure for 
an individual to know the origin and beginning of his house and sur- 
name, and how long it has stood, with good actions and virtue of his 
predecessors. No family in Southern Illinois has a longer line of 
traceable ancestors, worthier to be honored and more sterling in char- 
acteristics than the Maxey family, which name has existed in Amer- 
ica for nearly three centuries, and which is the oldest and best known 
in Jefferson county, Illinois, therefore it is with no little pleasure that 
the biographer herein sets forth the record, in brief outline of the 
Maxey family, of which the subject is an honored representative. 

James C. Maxey was born in Shiloh township, Jefferson coun- 
ty, June 14, 1827, and he enjoys the distinction of being the oldest 
living native born citizen of this county, the son of Burchett Maxey 
and the grandson of William Maxey. Jesse Maxey was the sub- 
ject's great-grandfather. He was one of the earliest settlers of Ten- 
nessee, and in a fight with the Indians near Gallatin he was shot 
and scalped by an Indian and left on the field for dead, but revived 
and lived for twenty years. He was the son of Edward Maxey, 
whose father was Walter Maxey, the first of this distinguished fam- 
ily to emigrate from Wales, where it originated. This was about 
the year 1 725 when Walter Maxey crossed the Atlantic ocean in 


wall's history of JEFFERSON CO.. ILL. 357 

an old time sailing vessel that required weeks to make the passage to 
America. He settled in Maryland and ever since the name has been 
prominent in various states, his descendants having settled in Vir- 
ginia, then removed to Sumner county, Tennessee, later came to 
Jefferson county, Illinois, one of these being Burchett Maxey, father 
of the subject of this review, who was one of the earliest of the pio- 
neers in this county, having set about the establishment of a new 
home in the wilderness for his wife and two children, having for 
neighbors red men and wild beasts, but he was of heroic mould and 
nothing daunted him, consequently he laid a sure foundation for 
succeeding generations in this locality. It was in the year 1818 
that Burchett Maxey brought his good wife and two children, Eliza 
and Perigan, overland from Sumner county, Tennessee, the young- 
est child, Perigan, being about one year old, died soon after they 
reached Moore's Prairie, where it was buried, having been the first 
white person buried in Jefferson county. It was in the springtime 
that this long and arduous trip was made through an unfrequented 
country, over almost impassable roads and across dangerous streams, 
consequently the hardships of the undertaking is apparent. The 
family soon afterward settled near the present city of Mount Ver- 
non and in 1823 Mr. Maxey built a log house on the site now occu- 
pied by the Third National Bank. Additions were later added 
and the house stood where it was originally built until about 1902, 
when the old buildings were wrecked to make way for the new 
building of the Third National Bank. This was the first building 
erected on what is now the public square of Mount Vernon. Burchett 
Maxey also built the first jail in Jefferson county, having been the 
lowest bidder when the county authorities asked for bids on the first 
bastile. It was built of logs and cost three hundred and twenty dol- 
lars, having stood near the site of the present jail. Mr. Maxey was 
a prominent character in the early days of Jefferson county and took 

358 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

an active part in the affairs of the same, playing well his part in its 
organization and subsequent development. 

James C. Maxey, the subject of this sketch, received his early 
educational training in the log school-houses of the pioneer days in 
Jefferson county, one of the schools which he attended having been 
taught by Henry G. Hook near Walnut Hill, which school the fa- 
ther and mother of the honorable William J. Bryan also attended. 
This was about the year 1837. Reared amid such rural environ- 
ments it is not strange that our subject should early turn his attention 
to farming and stock raising, making these his life work and, useless 
to add that he has been eminently successful, establishing an excel- 
lent home and laying by a competency for his declining years. 

James C. Maxey's happy domestic life dates from October 3 1 , 
1850, when he was united in marriage with Nancy J. Moss, who 
was also a descendant on the maternal side of an influential pioneer 
family, Lewis Johnson. Her father. Ransom Moss, settled near 
Shiloh church in an early day and when his first wife died old Shiloh 
cemetery was laid out and she was the first person buried there. 

Eight children were born to the subject and wife, namely : John 
R., deceased; Walter S., who is a member of the firm of Rackaway 
& Maxey; Oliver W., deceased; Oscar S. and Albion F., both suc- 
cessful farmers of Mount Vernon township ; James Henry, agent of 
the Standard Oil Company and secretary and treasurer of the 
Mount Veronon Ice & Storage Company; Lillie, who is the wife 
of I. F. Sugg, a merchant of Kinmundy, Illinois; Moss, a physician 
and surgeon of Mount Vernon, Illinois. 

Our subject was one of the loyal defenders of the national 
government during the days of the rebellion, having enlisted in Com- 
pany I, Fifty-eighth Illinois Volunteer Infantry, performing well 
his duty at all times and was honorably discharged at the close of 
the war. 

Mr. Maxey has never aspired to positions of public trust, al- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 359 

though he has been called upon to serve in various responsible pub- 
lic offices. He has been school trustee of Shiloh township; also 
Supervisor of Moore's Prairie township for two years and also was 
Supervisor of Mount Vernon township for a period of four years. 
By strict economy as Supervisor, and by encouraging paupers to at 
least partially support themselves he cut down the expenses of the 
township about one half, and it was due to his untiring efforts and 
good management that he succeeded in inducing the County Board 
of Supervisors to vote with him in a decision to build the four splen- 
did granitoid walks leading from each door of the court-house, con- 
necting with the curbing around the court-house square. He has al- 
ways manifested an abiding interest in the development of his coun- 
ty and township and his support could always be depended upon in 
furthering any movement looking to the betterment of the public in 

Mr. Maxey and his faithful life companion are now living at 
their pleasant and cozy home on Taylor avenue, both enjoying 
splendid health and a well earned respite from very active and use- 
ful lives, the subject being now (1909) in his eighty-second year 
and Mrs. Maxey in her seventy-sixth year, having rounded out fifty- 
eight years of harmonious and blissful married life. They have the 
undivided respect and admiration of a wide circle of friends who 
know them only as ever honest, kindly and gentle. 


The career of the well known gentleman whose name appears 
above has been a strenuous and varied one, the distinction which he 
has attained in different spheres of activity entitle him to honorable 

360 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

mention among the leading men and representative citizens of the 
county with which his Hfe has been so closely identified. The name 
of Maxey has been prominent in the annals of Jefferson county ever 
since this part of the state was opened for settlement, and to the sub- 
ject's grandfather belongs the credit of having been one of the first 
white men to introduce civilization into what is now one of the most 
progressive and enlightened sections of the state. The Maxey fam- 
ily was among the early settlers of Virginia, in colonial times and 
shortly after the Revolutionary period one, Jesse Maxey. a native 
of that state, moved to Tennessee, locating near the present site of 
Gallatin, where he took refuge in a fort for fear of the Indians. Hav- 
ing left the block-house in search of his horse, he was attacked by 
the savages a short time afterwards, and was shot, scalped and had 
his throat cut, but through the interposition of a renegade white man 
by the name of Fenton, his skull was not cleft, the man detecting 
signs of life which had escaped the eyes of the "Indians. The firing 
of guns brought immediate assistance from the fort and although 
left for dead, he subsequently recovered and survived the massacre 
for a period of fifteen to twenty years, during all of which time he 
suffered continuously from the wound in his throat which refused to 
heal. Instead of making him fear the red skins this fearful expe- 
rience seemed to exasperate him to such an extent that from that time 
onward he never ceased in his attempts to rid the country of the 
savages, taking part in a number of movements against them and dis- 
playing unusual boldness and ferocity in fight. This brave and in- 
trepid pioneer died many years ago but left to perpetuate his name 
a number of descendants in whom were reproduced the bravery and 
sterling worth which made him known and respected among his 
contemporaries. One of his sons, the grandfather of the subject, a 
native of Virginia, was a young man when the family migrated to 
Tennessee. He later became a successful farmer and large slave- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 361 

holder. After some years he was converted and joined the Metho- 
dist church, following which he studied the question of human ser- 
vitude in all of its phases until he came to the conclusion that the 
system was antagnostic to the spirit of the Gospel and that he could 
not maintain his Christian character while holding another in bond- 
age. In due time therefore he emancipated all of his slaves except 
one negro girl and became one of the active and influential abolition- 
ists of his part of the country. The unpleasant relations with his 
neighbors to which this radical change gave rise together with a de- 
sire to escape the presence of slavery led him as early as 1818 to 
move to Illinois. In May of that year he arrived in what was then 
Franklin county, now the county of Jefferson, and as stated in a pre- 
ceding paragraph he was one of the original pioneers of this part of 
the state and for a number of years one of the leading men of the 
community in which he lived. After entering land and founding a 
home he freed and educated the negro girl whom he brought with 
him, in addition to which he also began teaching the doctrines of 
abolitionism among the settlers and in due time was largely instru- 
mental in arousing a sentiment against slavery and keeping the coun- 
ty free from its blighting presence and influence. 

Mr. Maxey built the first mill in Jefferson county, a small prim- 
itive affair which was operated by horse power, but which was high- 
ly prized by the settlers, who, prior to its construction, were obliged 
to go to Carmi, fifty miles distant, for their breadstuff, or make it by 
hand at home. Water was afterwards used as a motive power, 
and for many years the mill manufactured both flour and lumber, 
and was extensively patronized. Mr. Maxey was also one of the 
founders of the old cotton factory on the Cumberland river, near 
Gallatin, Tennessee, and after becoming a resident of Illinois, took 
a prominent part in developing the country and introducing various 
industries, becoming a leader among his fellow men and to no small 

362 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

degree a moulder of opinion in matters of public as well as local in- 
terest. He lived a useful life and was highly esteemed by the early 
residents of Jefferson county, all of whom deplored his loss when 
stricken by the hand of death in 1837, at the age of sixty-eight 
years, his wife preceding him to the grave by only a few months. 
He was a contemporary and a neighbor of the great grandfather of 
Hon. William Jennings Bryan and between the two a warm and 
loyal friendship was maintained as long as they both lived. Seven 
sons and three daughters constituted the family of this sturdy pio- 
neer, all of whom lived to rear families of their own, one son and 
two daughters, being married at the same time by the same cere- 
mony. The gentleman who officiated at this triune marriage was 
Zadok Casey, afterwards Governor of Illinois, and for a period of 
twenty years a member of Congress from the district where he lived. 
Bennett Maxey, one his sons, was a soldier under General Jack- 
son, and took part in the battle of New Orleans. 

Another son by the name of William M. A. Maxey was born 
in Tennessee and was six years of age when the family moved to 
Illinois in 1818. He was reared amid the stirring scenes of the pio- 
neer period and when a young man bought timber from which he 
split rails, at fifty cents per hundred, to pay for his tuition for a few 
months at a subscription school, in which the three fundamentals 
"readin', writin' and 'rithmetic," constituted the course of study. 
Despite this indifferent intellectual discipline, however, he subse- 
quently became not only one of the best informed men of the com- 
munity, but in due time read medicine and for more than forty years 
was one of the most successful physicians in Jefferson county. Med- 
ical men being few in those days caused a wide demand for his ser- 
vices, and it is said that his patients were scattered over three coun- 
ties. In waiting on them he rode many hundred miles and was not 
infrequently absent from home three weeks while making his pro- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 363 

fessional calls. He also devoted considerable attention to agricul- 
ture, and his farm now owned and occupied by his son, the subject 
of this review, was one of the best improved and most productive 
of the part of the county in which it is situated. Captain Maxey 
has in his possession the old pair of saddle bags in which his father 
carried medicines to treat all diseases, common to humanity in the 
early times, the leather being still strong and the contents of the bags 
the same as when he discontinued practice, after his long and ardu- 
ous service. 

The maiden name of Mrs. William M. A. Maxey was Edna 
Owen. She was born in Silver Springs, Sumner county, Tennessee, 
but was reared in Wilson county, that state. When a young woman 
she came to Jefferson county, Illinois, in 1823, with her parents, 
Peter and Mary (Overbey) Owen, who were born, reared and 
married in Virginia, and carried all their earthly belongings across 
the mountains on horseback to Tennessee. Peter Owen was a sol- 
dier in the Revolutionary war and his hatred for a Tory was prover- 
bial during his lifetime. 

Capt. Samuel Thompson Maxey was born August 29, 1834, 
in Jefferson county, Illinois, and passed his early life on the family 
homestead, attending in winter season the subscription schools in a 
primitive log house which had long been used for the purpose. When 
old enough to be of service he worked in the woods, clearing the 
ground, cultivating the soil, etc., and during the greater part of his 
minority his life consisted of a ceaseless round of labor which re- 
sulted in a strong physique and the formation of habits which had no 
little influence in developing a well rounded character and directing 
his thoughts and actions in proper channels. Young Maxey re- 
mained with his parents until the national sky became overcast with 
the ominous clouds of rebellion when he laid aside the implements of 
husbandry and tendered his services to the government. In June, 

364 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

1861 , he rode horseback to Cairo, where he enlisted in Company H, 
First Illinois Cavalry, and after a brief period of instruction at that 
place accompanied his command in the Southeastern Missouri and 
the Southwestern Kentucky campaigns, taking part in the battle and 
capture of New Madrid, Island No. 10, Tiptonville, and the cap- 
ture of Memphis, reaching the latter city the day after the arrival 
of the Federal gun-boats. In July, 1862, his regiment reported at 
Benton Harbor, to be mustered out by a general order from the 
War Department, after which he returned home. Within three weeks 
he assisted in organizing what subsequently became Company B of 
the One Hundred Tenth Infantry, of which he was elected first 
lieutenant. For brave and meritorious conduct at the battle of Stone 
River, where he rendered especially valuable service, he was pro- 
moted the following February, captain of the company, although 
suffering at the time from a painful wound received in the above en- 
gagement. Notwithstanding the loss of an eye and the lacerating of 
his arm by the explosion of a shell. Captain Maxey persisted in re- 
maining with his men and continued at his post of duty until the One 
Hundred Tenth was consolidated, when by reason of there being 
more captains than companies and he the junior officer of that grade 
he was mustered out of the service. Returning home the captain 
devoted three months to provost duty, but in February. 1864, re- 
entered the service by enlisting as a private in the Sixth Illinois Cav- 
alry, which he joined at Memphis, where he was soon afterwards 
appointed a drill master. Later he was made second lieutenant of 
Company H, and after campaigning through Mississippi, Western 
Tennessee and Northern Alabama he took part in the movement to 
check the Confederate forces under General Hood, who were ad- 
vancing on Franklin and Nashville. In the battle at the former place 
Captain Maxey commanded the company which brought on the en- 
gagement and as in other actions signalized himself by brave and 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 365 

gallant conduct which won the confidence of the men of his com- 
mand, and the approbation of his superiors. After the battle he 
went to Nashville, thence to Kentucky, but returning to that city in 
time to take part in the battle, was again sent with his company to 
the front to draw the fire of the enemy and bring on the action. He 
proved equal to the trying emergency and was not only in the thick- 
est of the fight but captured the first bastian and was the first to cap- 
ture a battery and turn the guns on the enemy, besides seizing with 
his own hands the Confederate colors which he returned to head- 
quarters after the fighting had ceased. Captain Maxey assisted in 
the pursuit of the enemy to the Tennessee river and in the taking of 
many prisoners, later went to the Gravalla Springs, Alabama, where 
he was promoted captain and for a short time commanded the regi- 
ment during its march to Eastport, Mississippi. In the latter state 
he served for a time in the quartermaster's department, subsequently 
being detailed on general court martial duty until the following July 
when he marched over the mountains to Montgomery, Alabama, 
thence to Demapolis, in the same state where he was appointed pro- 
vost marshal of the post, which position he held until mustered out 
of the service at Selma, Alabama, on November 6th of the year 

On the first day of December following Captain Maxey ar- 
rived home and again resumed the duties of citizenship, which he has 
since discharged with the same conscientious convictions which char- 
acterized his long and active career as a brave and honorable de- 
fender of the Union. In 1867 he entered the ministry of the Methodist 
Episcopal church, being appointed by the presiding elder as a supply 
in the Southern Illinois conference. Two years later he became an 
itinerant and during the thirteen years ensuing served various cir- 
cuits and churches until failing health obliged him to discontinue 
further active work. At the expiration of the period indicated he 

366 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

retired to his farm in Jefferson county where he has since lived and 
prospered, the meanwhile devoting considerable time to his minis- 
terial labors and doing much good in leading men to the higher life. 

Captain Maxey has a beautiful and finely improved farm of 
two hundred and twenty acres, with good buildings, his residence 
being the old family dwelling erected by his father and so substan- 
tially constructed that it bids fair to stand another half century, a 
commodious, and to all intents and purposes a comfortable and at- 
tractive homestead. His other buildings are up-to-date and in ex- 
cellent repair, and the splendid condition of the farm and everything 
thereon bespeak the presence of a man familiar with the latest de- 
velopment in agricultural science and is abreast of the times in all 
that relates to progress and improvement. In addition to general 
farming the captain is quite extensively engaged in the breeding and 
raising of fine stock and is also an enthusiastic and successful horti- 
culturist, as his fifty acres of fine orchard in which the choicest vari- 
eties of all fruits grown in this latitude are produced. Believing in 
the conservation of the country's natural resources, the captain has 
not been destructive of timber as have many of his neighbors, hav- 
ing retained a valuable tract of woodland in which are many fine 
walnuts and other varieties sufficient for all purposes for many years 
to come. 

Captain Maxey's wife before her marriage was Miss Sarah 
Pearcy, a native of Jefferson county, and daughter of John B. and 
Amanda (Moss) Pearcy, who moved to Illinois a number of years 
ago from Tennessee. Four daughters and one son constitute the 
family of this couple, namely: Lena Maud, born July 5, 1881, 
now the wife of Otto Fox, of this county; Edna A., born Novem- 
ber 26, 1884, still a member of the home circle; Mary B., wife of 
Alva Swift, was born August 12, 1886; Harriet R. was born on 
August 26, 1888, died in infancy, and William Olin was born on 
March 17. 1894. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 367 

Captain Maxey is an unswerving Republican in his political 
views and at various times has been honored with local offices, being 
at this time official Surveyor of Jefferson county. He has been active 
and influential in promoting an interest in agriculture, is a leader and 
effective lecturer in Farmer's Institutes and some years ago was a 
delegate to the Farmer's Congress of the United States. He is 
closely identified with the agricultural interests of Illinois and is 
frequently called to different parts of the state to address institutes 
and other assemblies in behalf of the farmers. He has been a con- 
sistent member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows for fifty 
three years and one of the oldest Odd Fellows in the state, and has 
filled all the chairs in the local lodge with which he is identified be- 
sides representing it on a number of occasions in the Grand Lodge. 
He is also a leading member of the Grand Army of the Republic 
in which he has held every office within the gift of the fraternity and 
keeps well informed concerning the old soldiers as well as pro- 
foundly versed in the history of the country for the preservation of 
which he has devoted several years of his life. 


Few men in Jefferson county occupy as prominent a position in 
political circles or as large a place in public view as the well known 
editor and publisher whose brief biography is presented in the fol- 
lowing lines. The record of a busy and successful life must ever 
prove of interest to the student who would learn the intrinsic value 
of individuality and lessons to be derived from such a career can- 
not fail to have great influence in shaping the character and fixing 
the destiny of the youth with an ambition to rise above the common 
level and reach an honorable position among his fellow men. 

368 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

Maurice J. Seed, editor and publisher of the Mount Vernon 
Daily Register, and a journalist of wide repute in central and south- 
ern Illinois, is descended on the paternal side from an old and emi- 
nently respectable family whose history is traceable through a long 
line of ancestry to the early part of the seventeenth century, at which 
time the name was well known in various parts of England. In 1 869 
two brothers, John and William Seed, who espoused the cause of 
William of Orange, enlisted under the standard of that Prince and 
took part in the struggle against King James, participating in the 
celebrated battle of the Boyne in Ireland, where that unfortunate 
monarch was overthrown and at the close of the war settling in 
County Down, where for a period of one hundred and forty-eight 
years their descendants have been among the well known and sturdy 
yeomanry of that land. 

Thomas H. Seed, the subject's father, is a native of Lawrence 
county, Illinois, born in the town of Lawrenceville on the 1 2th day 
of June, 1843. He served during the late Civil war as sergeant of 
Company A, Sixty-third Illinois Infantry, was with Grant at the 
siege and capture of Vicksburg and subsequently took part in the 
Atlanta campaign under General Sherman; after the fall of that 
Confederate stronghold he accompanied his command in the cele- 
brated march to the sea. At the close of the war he engaged in the 
milling business at Lawrenceville and later at Bellmont, Illinois, 
where he remained until 1 889, when he disposed of his interests in 
that town and purchased the Sumner Press at Sumner, this state, 
which he published with encouraging success during the fourteen 
years ensuing, achieving the meanwhile creditable reputation as an 
able editor and judicious newspaper man. Disposing of his pub- 
lishing plant at the expiration of the period indicated, Mr. Seed in 
1 902 came to Mount Vernon and has held an important position in 
the office, proving an able and valuable assistant and contributing 
much to the success of the paper, editorially and otherwise. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 369 

The maiden name of the subject's mother was Emma Pope. 
She was born July 29, 1850, in Burlington, Ohio, spent her youth 
and received her education in Ironton, that state, and later came 
with her parents to Flora, Illinois, where she lived until her mar- 
riage to Thomas H. Seed, after which she resided at Bellmont and 
Sumner and in 1 902 moved with her family to Mount Vernon where 
she still makes her home. Thomas H. Seed's mother, Sabilla Ryan, 
came also from an old family whose antecedents were among the 
early settlers of Virginia in which state her grandmother, who was 
a Zane, was born. The latter's husband was killed by the Indians 
in a very early day, the Zanes being among the best known and most 
highly connected families of the Old Dominion state. Mrs Seed's 
people removed from Virginia to Zanesville, Ohio, many years ago, 
thence about 1838 to Illinois in several counties of which a number 
of descendants still reside. Thomas H. and Emma Seed are the 
parents of two children, Maurice J., whose name introduces this 
sketch and Rhoda Seed, instructor of English in the Mount Ver- 
non township high school, and one of the most accomplished and 
successful teachers of Jefferson county. After a preliminary edu- 
cational training in the common schools and at Northwestern Acad- 
emy, Miss Seed entered the college department of Northwestern 
University at Evanston, Illinois, where she was graduated with the 
class of 1 906, since which time she has devoted her attention to edu- 
cational work and, as indicated above, now stands among the lead- 
ing teachers in this part of the state. 

Maurice J. Seed was born December 13, 1871, in Lawrence- 
ville, Lawrence county, Illinois, and spent his early life in that city, 
and the town of Bellmont, attending the public schools in the mean- 
time. Endowed with strong mental powers and an ardent desire for 
books and study he made rapid progress and in due time completed 
the common school course and took up the more advanced branches 


370 wall's history of jefferson co.. ill. 

of learning. He did the greater part of his high school work in North- 
western Academy at Evanston, and after being graduated from that 
institution in June, 1 899. entered the college department of North- 
western University at the same place, where he prosecuted his stud- 
ies until completing the full course and receiving his degree in June, 
1902, devoting special attention to English and Political Economy, 
during his collegiate experience and receiving the N. W. Harris 
prize of one hundred dollars for his thesis on the trust question. He 
made an exceptionally creditable record for scholarship, stood high 
in all of his classes and in addition to the above signal reward of 
merit he was also awarded Phi Beta Kappa honors, besides gaining 
confidence and good will of his fellow students and the esteem of 
the professors and officers of the University. September following 
his graduation, Mr. Seed purchased the Mount Vernon Daily and 
Weekly Register, and since 1902 he has devoted his entire atten- 
tion to the interests of the paper, with the result that he now has one 
of the best equipped offices in the southern part of the state and a 
paper which compares favorably with the large and more pretentious 
sheets of the great metropolitan centers. Since taking possession of 
the Register it has constantly grown in favor, and in addition to 
being the official Republican organ of Jefferson county, it is highly 
prized a clean dignified family paper, in which nothing low or offen- 
sive is given publicity, being devoted to politics, home and foreign 
news, education, choice literature, humor, etc., and at all times it 
has advocated public improvements and stood for enterprise and 
progress in all the terms imply. Mr. Seed has demonstrated marked 
ability as an able and forceful writer, wielding a graceful as well as 
a keen and incisive pen, and in discussing the leading questions and 
issues of the day, proving a strong and fearless but always a court- 
eous antagonist. Although one of the Republican standard bearers 
in the county of Jefferson and rendering valuable service to his 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO.. ILL. 371 

party he conducts his paper in such a way as to win esteem of his 
political adversaries and to please the people. The Register has 
under his able management proven financially successful and as an 
enterprising broad minded man of liberal views and progressive ten- 
dencies he has forged to the front rank among his contemporaries and 
is today considered one of the ablest as well as one of the most popu- 
lar newspaper men in Southern Illinois. 

Mr. Seed has accomplished much for the good of his party, 
not only through the medium of his paper, but as a successful or- 
ganizer and judicious adviser in its councils, being at this time secre- 
tary of the Republican Central Committee of Jefferson county in 
which and other capacities he has added to the strength of the ticket 
and made his influence felt in reducing the strong normal majority 
of the opposition. Aside from his political work he is interested in 
the material progress of the city and county, and takes an active 
part in promoting all enterprises for the good of the public and the 
benefit of his fellow men. He holds membership with several secret 
fraternal organizations, being especially interested in Masonry in 
which he has attained high rank and been honored with a number 
of positions of responsibility and trust. He belongs to Mount Ver- 
non Lodge, No. 31, Free and Accepted Masons, Hubbard Chapter 
No. 160, Royal Arch Masons, of which he has been sojourner for 
four years, Patton Commandery, No. 69, Knights Templar, and is 
also a member of Jefferson Lodge, No. 131, Knights of Pythias, 
of this city. 

On October 18, 1905, Mr. Seed was united in marriage with 
Miss Elizabeth Fickes, a native of Steubenville, Ohio, a graduate 
of Adrian College, Michigan, and a lady of varied culture and 
beautiful character who is highly esteemed by the many friends she 
has made since becoming an influential factor in the religious and 
social life of her adopted city. The only offspring of this union was 

372 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

a daughter who died in infancy. Mr. and Mrs. Seed are members 
of the First Methodist Episcopal church of Mount Vernon and 
maintain a lively interest in all religious and humanitarian enterprises 
contributing liberally to these and other movements for the good of 
the community and lending their influence to all means for the al- 
leviating human suffering and elevating the standing of the race. 


In every community, large or small, there are a few men who, 
by their force of character, are intuitively recognized as in the front 
rank of representative citizens, men who are successful in their busi- 
ness undertakings, generous and fair in their business relations and 
who perceive and advocate warmly those measures which msure the 
public welfare. They succeed not necessarily because of extra- 
ordinary talent or because of the influence of others, but very largely 
because of close application to whatever they have in hand and 
thus master details and go forward step by step, always to higher 
planes. In the thriving city of Mount Vernon there is a representa- 
tive of this class found in Walter S. Maxey, the son of James C. 
and Nancy J. Maxey, who was born in Field township, Jefferson 
county, Illinois, Mc(rch 8, 1854. (For full sketch of subject's parents 
and ancestors see sketch of James C. Maxey.) 

The subject received his early education in the common and 
high schools of his native county. Being a diligent student he soon 
acquired a good education and was enabled to begin teaching at the 
age of twenty and in a short time had established quite a reputation 
in the Jefferson county public schools as an able instructor, follow- 
ing this profession for a period of nine years in three districts. In 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 373 

the winter of 1 876 he taught in Jersey county, this state. His ser- 
vices were in great demand and he succeeded in pleasing both pupil 
and patron. But notwithstanding his success in teaching Mr. Maxey 
decided to take up merchandising, consequently in the fall of 1880 
he began clerking in the grocery store of the late S. K. Latham, 
continuing in a most satisfactory manner in Mr. Latham's employ 
for a period of three years, a part of the time for S. G. H. Taylor, 
who purchased the former's business. 

In the winter of 1884 Mr. Maxey served on the United States 
grand jury at Springfield, Illinois, for three months and was unani- 
mously elected clerk of that body, the duties of which he performed 
in a very faithful and able manner. 

In July, 1 884, our subject entered the drug store of Porter & 
Bond as clerk and apprentice to learn the drug business, having 
worked for this firm continuously until October, 1 889, when, having 
become a registered pharmacist he formed a partnership with Dr. A. 
C. Johnson and J. H. Rackaway in the drug business, which part- 
nership continued until 1900, when Mr. Maxey and Mr. Rackaway 
bought the interests of Doctor Johnson in the drug business which 
they are still continuing at the old stand on the southeast corner of 
the square, making twenty-five consecutive years that this business 
has been located there, consequently the store in known not only to 
everyone in Mount Vernon but throughout Jefferson county and an 
extensive trade has been built up, for the managers are courteous and 
considerate to all customers and handle a complete line of drugs, 
sundries, etc., of excellent quality. Their store is a neat and well 
managed one. 

Mr. Maxey was married to Almeda Hicks in 1 888. She was 
the youngest daughter of the late Col. S. G. Hicks, a well knovra 
family of this county. Mrs. Maxey passed to her rest in 1891 and 
in 1 900 the subject married Estella Wiedeman, a graduate and very 

374 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

eflficient teacher in the Mount Vernon pubhc schools. To this 
union three children have been born, namely: Walter Charles, 
James Wayland and Margaret Moss. 

The subject has filled the office of Assessor for Webber town- 
ship; also Collector, and several terms as School Trustee of Mount 
Vernon township. In all the relations of life he has proven true to 
the trusts reposed in him and performed his duties conscientiously, 
consequently he is spoken of in highest terms of approval by all who 
know him, and is a worthy representative of the old and honored 
Maxey family. 


It is with no intention of understanding the enterprise and suc- 
cess of the many representative farmers of Jefferson county or of 
memorizing their influence in the noble vocation to which their ener- 
gies are devoted when we say that by universal consent the subject 
of this sketch is pre-eminently the leading agriculturist of this part of 
Illinois and among the most progressive men of his calling in the 
state. Believing in the dignity of his chosen work and the nobility 
of true knight of the soil he has labored long and earnestly to real- 
ize his high ideals of husbandry and the reward which usually fol- 
lows wisely directed industry and patient endeavor, has come to him 
in lavish measure, as is mdicated by his palatial country seat on one 
of the model farms of the state and a fortune which places him 
among the financially independent men of the county which he hon- 
ors by his citizenship. 

Elijah H. Marteeny was born near Bloomington, Illinois, in 
the year 1856, and is the son of William and Sallie (King) Mart- 
eeny. From the most reliable data obtainable his paternal ante- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 375 

cedents came originally from Germany and settled many years ago 
in Pennsylvania in various parts of which state the family has been 
well known for several generations. Mr. Marteeny's grandfather 
was born and reared in Pennsylvania and like his ancestors from 
time immemorial, followed tilling the soil for a livelihood. He was 
a man of sterling worth, succeeded well in his chosen calling and 
after a long and useful life died of infirmities incident to old age on 
the family seat near the place of his birth. His good wife, who also 
lived to be quite old, bore him seven children, the majority of whom 
grew to maturity and became well settled in life and highly esteemed 
in their respective places of residence. 

Mr. Marteeny's maternal ancestors, the Kings, were of Eng- 
lish extraction and among the substantial j'eomanry of New York, 
where his grandparents lived and died and where descendants of 
the family are still to be found. 

William Marteeny, father of the subject, was born in Pennsyl- 
vania, but after his marriage with Sallie King, moved in 1839 to 
Illinois and settled near Bloomington, having been among the pio- 
neers of that part of the state. The journey to the new home was 
in what was then the western wilderness, was a slow and tedious ex- 
perience, having been made in a wagon which held all the couple's 
earthly possessions. They were many days on the way and ere 
reaching their destination were obliged to traverse the long distance 
through wild and uninhabited country and encountered numerous 
difficulties and hardships, including the absence of roads, inclement 
weather and at times the lack of the simplest necessities of life. On 
arriving at his objective point Mr. Marteeny purchased land on 
which he at once proceeded to erect a small cabin of the most prim- 
itive type, which he equipped with rude furniture made by hand, and 
for several years he and his good wife experienced their full share 
of the hardships and vicissitudes of pioneer life. 



The conditions of William Marteeny's childhood were such 
as to interfere very materially with his education and at his marriage 
he could barely read and perhaps laboriously write his own name. 
His wife, however, had enjoyed superior advantages in her younger 
days and at the time referred to was not only well educated but a 
woman of wide general information and refined tastes. No sooner 
had the couple become well settled in their new home than the wife 
began in their hours of leisure to instruct her husband, he being an 
apt and ambitious pupil made rapid advancement and in due time 
acquired a thorough knowledge of the ordinary school branches, 
which served as a foundation for his subsequent wide range of read- 
ing and the intelligent observation which made him one of the best 
informed men of the community. He also became one of the most 
enterprising agriculturists of his neighborhood, reducing the quarter 
section of land which he entered to a high state of cultivation and 
by the addition of a number of substantial improvements made a 
farm which for many years was considered a model by the people 
of the neighborhood. 

William and Sallie Marteeny had a family of eleven children, 
eight of whom grew to maturity. James Monroe, one of the sons, 
who reached the years of manhood, entered the three months' ser- 
vice at the beginning of the Civil war in the Sixtieth Illinois Infan- 
try, and re-enlisted at the expiration of that time for three years, and 
was killed at the battle of Atlanta. William Delos, another son, 
also entered the three months' service, later re-enlisted for three 
years or until the close of the war, but by reason of disability was 
afterwards discharged, later dying from the effects of disease thus 
incurred. Tillman was also a soldier in an Illinois regiment at the 
beginning of the rebellion, but some time after re-entering the service 
procured his discharge in order to look after his mother's interests, 
who in the meanwhile had become a widow, her husband dying in 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 377 

the year 1863, and one of the sons was killed by a stroke of light- 
ning at a Fourth of July celebration near Centralia, a daughter died 
in 1863, at the age of seventeen, and another daughter, who married 
and moved to Colorado, departed this life in that state. 

A few years prior to his death William Marteeny sold his farm 
near Bloomington and purchased a farm in Jefferson county to which 
he removed and on which he spent the remainder of his days, being 
forty-six years old when called to the other world. His widow sur- 
vived him until 1874, when she too passed away, being fifty-four 
years of age at the time of her demise. Both belonged to the Meth- 
odist church and were noted for their religious zeal and good works, 
having always been interested in the cause of Christianity and their 
influence was ever on the side of right living and correct conduct. 
Mr. Marteeny was an uncompromising Republican and a zealous 
friend of the Union, having been a leading member of the Union 
League, during the early part of the war. Through his efforts a num- 
ber of young men were induced to enter the service and do battle for 
the national banner. 

Elijah H. Marteeny spent his early life on the family home- 
stead in Jefferson county and enjoyed the privileges usually accorded 
country lads, after which he became familiar with the duties of the 
farm and grew, up with the conviction that honest toil is the only 
true passport to success and honorable manhood. Reared to agri- 
cultural pursuits he early evinced a decided liking for the vocation 
and after remaining with his father until he passed into the great be- 
yond he took charge of the homestead in Jefferson county to which 
the family had moved in the meantime, and after his marriage pur- 
chased at intervals the interests of the other heirs until he became 
sole owner of the place. 

Mr. Marteeny's farm consists of one hundred and seventy- 
three acres of as fine land as Jefferson county can boast, every foot 

378 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

of which is under high state of cultivation, while the improvements 
of all kinds from the splendid modern dwelling to the fences and 
smallest out buildings are of the latest and most approved type and 
compare favorably with the best improvements of the kind in the 
state. Mr. Marteeny has made a careful and critical study of soils 
and their adaptability to the various crops grown in this latitude and 
in the most liberal sense of the term is a modern farmer who believes 
in progressive methods and in the dignity of the calling. In some 
respects he has departed from long accepted theories of tillage, one 
of which is the rotation of crops as far as the cultivation of timothy 
is concerned, contending, with good reasons, that the longer ground 
is devoted to this crop the richer the soil becomes. As proof of the 
correctness of this theory he presents the fact that for thirteen con- 
secutive years the part of his farm devoted to timothy not only kept 
up an average yield of from one and a half to three tons of excel- 
lent hay per acre, but when put in corn produced a larger and finer 
crop than any other field on the place, the average per acre also 
being greater than that of any other farm in the neighborhood. In 
view of this fact he pays a great deal of attention to timothy which 
yields him from seventeen to thirty-two dollars per acre, and as there 
is always a great demand for first class hay of this kind, he realizes 
bountiful returns on his meadows. His success in the raising of 
grain and other crops has likewise been most gratifying and in all 
that pertains to general agriculture he is fully abreast of the times 
and far in advance of the majority of farmers, cultivating the soil 
according to scientific principles and making use of the latest modern 
implements and machinery in prosecuting his labors. By judicious 
fertilizing he has not only attained but enhanced the productiveness 
of his land, every acre of which is cultivated to its utmost capacity 
with results that have fully justified his many innovations and earned 
for him the reputation of one of the most intelligent and successful 
men of his vocation in the southern part of the state. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 379 

Mr. Marteeny, as already indicated, believes in imp^rovement 
and has not been sparing in the matter of adding to the beauty and 
attractiveness of his home which is now conceded to be the finest 
residence in Jefferson county outside of the county seat. 

The splendid modern dwelling, but recently completed, is lit- 
tle less than palatial in size, comfort and adornment, the walls be- 
ing of concrete with cement finish, the thirteen rooms and several 
halls amply commodious and admirably adapted to their respective 
purposes, the entire edifice from basement to the lookout tower being 
a model of architectural skill and a home calculated to gratify the 
tastes of the most critical and exacting observer. Water is sup- 
plied to every part of the house from a large tank in the cellar, 
from which it is forced by air pressure to the different rooms, and in 
case of fire streams of great force can be thrown into every nook and 
corner of the building thus obviating any danger from this source. 
The artificial light plant by which the building is illuminated is a 
triumph of scientific achievement, every room being supplied with 
lamps of sufficient power to convert night into day, as is also the 
basement which extends the entire length of the building, and is 
finished with reference to various uses to which adapted. No pains 
were spared in the decorating and furnishing of this superb dwell- 
ing, all parts of which display exceedingly fine taste. At the same 
time the matter of comfort was by no means overlooked, and it is 
doubtful if in any other county in the state another building answer- 
ing all the purposes and meeting all the requirements of a model 
rural home can be found surpassing this. 

The other buildings on Mr. Marteeny's place are in keeping 
with the residence, the barn being the largest in the county, com- 
plete in all its parts and appointments, while the smaller out build- 
ings are also first class, modern structures, all in good repair and 
well adapted to the various purposes for which designed. The en- 

380 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

tire farm is enclosed with woven wire fence, the splendid dwelling 
surrounded with trees that yield both fruit and shade, the lawn in- 
terspersed with beds of the choicest flowers, the excellent condition 
of the fields, the presence of herds of fine cattle and other high grade 
stock, indeed, the appearance of the entire premises and everything 
thereon indicate a home of an intelligent gentleman of refined tastes 
and progressive tendencies, as master of the vocation to which his 
life has been devoted and an influential factor in promoting an in- 
terest in agricultural science. 

Mr. Marteeny was married December 17, 1877, to Miss Ida 
Laird, of Jefferson county, daughter of Samuel and Eleanor Laird, 
a union blessed with children as follows: Ray, born May 4, 1878; 
Maud Estella, born June 19, 1882, married Chfford Bartell, re- 
sides at Victor, Colorado. She was a graduate of the State Nor- 
nal School at Greeley, Colorado, and for three years a teacher in 
the schools of that state; Ethel Blanche, born February 4. 1884; 
Alice Gertrude, March 8, 1886; Morton K., December 4, 1888; 
Lethel v., born July 5, 1890; Hazel K., born April 25, 1892; 
Orville H., who was born October 22, 1894, and died July 11, 
1896, and Merle, whose birth occurred on the 21st day of Jan- 
uary, 1897. 

In public affairs Mr. Marteeny is one of the influential Repub- 
licans of the county but has never aspired to office, the only elective 
with which his fellow citizens ever honored him being Highway 
Commissioner, in which capacity he served with great acceptance for 
a period of three years. For many years he has been a warm friend 
of education and it was through his influence and liberality that a 
public school building at one time was erected on his farm, near the 
site now occupied by his beautiful modern residence. Two of his 
daughters are teachers in the public schools of Jefferson county, and 
at the present time three members of his family are students in the 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 381 

high school of Mount Vernon and will graduate in the class of '09. 
Fraternally Mr. Marteeny belongs to the Court of Honor and has 
filled all the chairs in the local lodge with which identified. 

In all that constitutes upright manhood and progressive citizen- 
ship Mr. Marteeny is easily the peer of any of his contemporaries in 
the county of Jefferson and his sterling integrity and stainless honor 
mark him as one who has ever tried to do his duty and to live in a 
manner becoming a broad and liberal minded American of noble 
aims and high ideals. He has acted well his part in the affairs of his 
fellow men and the conspicuous place he holds among the enterpris- 
ing and public-spirited citizens of his adopted county has been faith- 
fully and honorably won. 

The following items of family history are deemed an appro- 
priate close to the foregoing review: Mr. Marteeny 's paternal 
grandfather was born April 9, 1791, and died October 14, 1845, 
aged fifty-four years; his grandmother was born June 19, 1791, 
and departed this life on June 11,1 833, aged forty-two years. Wil- 
liam Marteeny, our subject's father, was born December 17 1818, 
married Sallie King, July 4, 1 839, the latter having been born on 
June 30th of the year 1815. Their children were Delos, born 
January 5, 1830, died January 18, 1876; George Tillison, born 
July 1 7, 1840, died July 30, 1841 ; Mary Elizabeth was born No- 
vember 26, 1841, and at the present time lives in Colorado; James 
Monroe, born March 30, 1844, killed at Adanta, Georgia, Sep- 
tember 3, 1864; Tilman Augustus, born March 17, 1846, lives in 
Chicago; George W., born March 10, 1848. was killed by light- 
ning July 4, 1865; Clarinda M., born June 9, 1849, died June 12, 
1854; Jane B., born March 5, 1851. died May 22, 1902; Mis- 
souri was bom October 1 1, 1853, died September 3, 1854; Elijah 
H., of this review, October 17, 1856; Ella, the youngest of the 
family, was born June 15, 1859, and died April 15. 1860. 

382 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

The father of these children died March 29, 1864. the mother 
on the 23d of December, 1 874. 


In an age when there is no little just discrimination between the 
true and the false, when real assurance is better appreciated than 
unpretending merit, it is a pleasure to contemplate the career and 
character of such a man as the subject of this memoir, who, though 
unassuming, has not been underestimated by the people and who in 
return for their confidence and attachment has taught them how valu- 
able may be those professional services that must be sought for and 
are never obtrusively displayed, as it were, from the house tops or 
on the public square. Though a man of unpretentious worth, he 
possesses the magnetic force that silently attracts men and those 
mental qualities and personal graces that grapple them to him as 
with bands of Steele, also the tact and power that make his fellows, 
as events, subserve his purposes and add to his honorable reputation 
in one of the most useful and exacting callings which appeal to the 
human mind. 

Dr. Moss Maxey is scion from superior stock. In his life cur- 
rents are mingled the stury strength of old Virginia ancestry and the 
ardor of antecedents whose early experience was closely inter- 
woven with the pioneer history of the West. For many years both 
branches of his family have been closely identified with the rise and 
progress of Jefferson county and today there are few names as 
widely known or as greatly esteemed in Southern Illinois, as the one 
which he so honorably bears. 

Burchett Maxey, the doctor's grandfather, who erected the 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 383 

first house on the present site of Mount Vernon in the year 1819, 
was a native of Virginia, where his birth occurred in 1 795, and to 
his son, James C. Maxey, the subject's father, belongs the distinction 
of being the oldest native born citizen of Jefferson county at the 
present time. Burchett Maxey removed from his native place to 
Sumner county, Virginia, in his younger days, thence migrated to 
Southern Illinois and was one of the first permanent settlers in what 
is now the county of Jefferson. He bore his full share in the pio- 
neer history of this part of the state, but has long been sleeping the 
sleep that knows no awaking, leaving to his descendants a name that 
lives in the memories of the present generation and is destined to be 
handed down to future years as one of the leaders of civilization into 
what is now one of the most prosperous and enlightened counties of 
the commonwealth. 

James C. Maxey, a sketch of whom appears elsewhere in this 
volume, married Nancy Moss, like himself, a native of Jefferson 
county, and became the father of eight children whose names are as 
follows: John R., deceased; Walter S., a druggist of Mount Ver- 
non; Oscar, a farmer and stock raiser of Jefferson county; A. F., 
who is also engaged in the pursuit of agriculture in the county; 
Henry, manager of the Standard Oil plant and of the Ice & Cold 
Storage Company, of Mount Vernon; Lillie married Frank Sugg, 
of Kinmundy, Illinois; Oliver, deceased; and Dr. Moss Maxey, 
of this review. 

Doctor Maxey is a native of Jefferson county, Illinois, and 
since infancy his life has been very closely associated with the place 
of his birth. In the free wholesome out-door life of the farm, he 
spent his early years and while still quite young learned the lessons 
of industry and thrift in his father's fields and under the direction of 
his parents laid broad and deep the solid mental and moral founda- 
tion upon which his subsequent career as a distinguished member of 

384 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

the medical profession rests. After attending the district schools 
until acquiring a pretty thorough knowledge of the branches taught 
therein he turned his attention to farm labor and was thus engaged 
on the family homestead until deciding to what vocation or profes- 
sion his future life should be devoted. Having selected medicine 
as the calling most suited to his tastes and inclinations, the doctor in 
1 894 entered the Missouri Medical College at St. Louis, where he 
pursued his professional studies and researches until completing the 
prescribed course three years later, receiving the degree of Doctor of 
Medicine from that institution in 1 897. 

Immediately after his graduation Doctor Maxey located at 
Mount Vernon, where he soon gained recognition and built up a 
practice which continued to grow in magnitude and importance until 
his place among the successful physicians and surgeons became per- 
manently fixed and a liberal income assured. 

At the beginning of his career he was actuated by a laudable 
ambition to advance in his noble calling and become a true healer of 
human ills and with this object in view he devoted every energy to 
the acquiring of a profound knowledge of medical science with the 
ability to apply the same to the treatment of diseases. His watch- 
fulness over the interests and welfare of his patients, his devotion to 
his profession, his sound sense and good judgment combined to com- 
plete his acknowledged fitness for his calling and in due time his 
name and fame spread far beyond the limits of the field to which his 
talents were principally devoted and earned for him an honorable 
reputation among the distinguished physicians and surgeons in the 
southern part of the state. In addition to his general practice the 
doctor was for eight years one of the surgeons of the Mount Ver- 
non Car Manufacturing Company, discharging the duties of the 
same with signal ability which has added much to his reputation as a 
painstaking and untiring devotee of the healing art. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 385 

Doctor Maxey has met with unusual success as a surgeon and 
among his professional brethren is considered a skillful operaor. In 
medicine he has few equals and no superiors in the city of his resi- 
dence as is indicated by the extensive practice he now commands, 
which has been as successful financially as professionally and which 
has resulted in the accumulation of a handsome competency and 
gained for him a place among the well-to-do men of his city and 
county. The doctor has spared no pains to keep abreast of the 
times in all matters relating to his life work and in touch with the 
trend of professional thought, being a close and diligent student, a 
critical observer and to no small degree an investigator whose dis- 
coveries have added very materially to his own success and assisted 
others in their professional work. He holds membership in various 
societies and organizations for the advancement of professional 
thought, among which are the Jefferson County Medical Society, 
the National Association for the Study and Preservation of Tuber- 
culosis; the Association for the Advancement of Science and other 
societies of like character, in the deliberations of which he keeps well 
informed and in close touch with the leading spirits among the mem- 

Doctor Maxey is highly esteemed in the community and his in- 
tercourse with his fellows has been such as to command the respect 
and confidence of all. Like most enterprising men he takes an active 
interest in secret fraternal work and belongs to several organizations 
with this principle as a basis, the most noted being the Masonic 
Order, in which he has risen to a high degree and been honored at 
intervals with positions of honor and trust. He is past master of 
Mount Vernon Lodge, No. 3 1 , and is a member of the Royal Arch 
Chapter besides having a wide acquaintance among the leading 
Masons of his own and other states. In politics he is a Democrat, 
entirely inactive as far as participation in party affairs is concerned 

386 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

notwithstanding which he is famihar with the leading questions and 
issues of the day and profoundly versed in the history and policies 
of the various political oragnizations which have marked the progress 
of the United States from the founding of the government to the 
present time. 

As indicated in a preceding paragraph Doctor Maxey is a 
student not only of matters relating to his profession but of a wide 
range of subjects including history, science, sciology, evolution and 
history of comparative religion, his acquaintance with the world's 
best literature being both general and profound. 

He has always been a good reader and finds his chief enjoy- 
ment in his magnificent library where in converse with the wise and 
great of the ages he acquires the knowledge and intellectual acumen 
which renders him an authority on the literature of all countries 
and- all times and make him a welcome addition to circles and gath- 
erings having in view the mental improvement of their members. 

The doctor has exercised sound judgment and wise discretion 
in building up his library which is pronounced by scholars and others 
capable of judging to be the finest collection of standard works in 
Mount Vernon and one of the largest and most valuable in the state. 
He selects his books with the greatest care, keeping in mind their 
literary merit and worth, allowing none but those of recognized 
ability on his shelves, the number of volumes at this time being con- 
siderably in excess of one thousand, among which are none of a light 
or frivolous character, all being standard and of the highest order 
of literary excellence. In his collection are a number of very rare 
editions that have come down from remote times and not a few of 
his choice books are beyond price and cannot be duplicated. 

Doctor Maxey was first married in 1892 to Miss Lulu 
Swift, of Mount Vernon, the union resulting in the birth of two chil- 
dren, a son, Hugh W., and a daughter by the name of Vivian, aged 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 387 

fifteen and twelve years, respectively. His second marriage vs^as 
solemnized in 1904 with Miss Winnie Tanner, the accomplished 
and popular daughter of Allen C. Tanner, a prominent citizen of 
Mount Vernon and one of the enterprising men of Jefferson county. 


One of the leading business men of Mount Vernon and an 
honorable representative of the old and well known family whose 
history is briefly outlined in the sketch of Christopher D. Ham, is a 
native of Jefferson county, and the son of Christopher D. and 
Helena (Grant) Ham. He was born May 23, 1874. in the city 
where he still resides, received his intellectual discipline in the 
schools of the same and at the early age of seventeen years began 
his business career by entering his father's bank, where he acquired 
a practical knowledge of financial matters and in due time became 
one of the institution's ablest and most trusted employes. 

He has never taken upon himself the duties and responsibilities 
of matrimony, notwithstanding which he makes the most of life and 
its opportunities, encourages all legitimate means for the advance- 
ment of the community along social, intellectual and moral lines 
and spares no reasonable efforts to benefit his fellow men and make 
the world better by his presence. With his mother he occupies the 
family residence known as Grant Place. 

Mr. Ham is a Mason of high degree, belonging to Blue Lodge, 
No. 3 1 , Chapter No. 1 6, and Commandery No. 69, Mount Vernon 
He is also identified with the Jefferson Lodge, No. 121, Knights of 
Pythias, and Lodge 819, Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, 
in all of which he has held important official positions from time to 

388 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

time. In matters religious he subscribes to the Methodist faith, and 
with his mother belongs to the church in Mount Vernon, being in- 
terested in the various lines of work under the auspices of the same. 


Pre-eminently a self-made man and one of the leading mem- 
bers of a bar noted for the high order of its legal talent, the subject 
of this sketch fills a large place in the public view and for a number 
of years has figured prominently in the civil affairs of his county and 
state. He enjoys to a marked degree the confidence and esteem of 
his fellow citizens, has held worthily positions of honor and trust and 
although a young man, has made his influence felt in various lines of 
activity and may with propriety be classed among the leaders of 
thought in the city of his residence. Conrad Schul, attorney and 
counsellor-at-law, and ex-Judge of Jefferson county, was born Feb- 
ruary 23, 1875, in New York City. His father, Conrad Schul, also 
a native of the great metropolis, was a tailor by trade and for a 
number of years conducted a thriving establishment in the city of 
his birth. Katherine Landregan, who became the wife of the elder 
Schul, was born and reared in New York state and was of Irish 
descent, her husband's people coming originally from Germany. She 
died when her only child, the subject of this sketch, was quite young 
and left to him the memory of a beautiful character and a devoted 

Conrad Schul, Jr., spent the first ten years of his life in his na- 
tive city and about 1885 came to Hamilton county, Illinois, where 
he received his education. Subsequently, August, 1892, he be- 
came a resident of Mount Vernon and for several years thereafter 



wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 389 

was employed in the car shops of this city, devoting his leisure time 
the meanwhile to the study of law, for which he early manifested a 
decided preference. Mr. Schul began his legal studies in March, 
1894, under the direction of George B. Leonard, a well known at- 
torney of Jefferson county, and by diligent application made such 
rapid and commendable progress that within less than three years he 
was able to pass the required examination and engage in the practice 
of his profession, his admission to the bar bearing date of February 
23, 1897, the twenty-second anniversary of his birth. Considering 
the difficulties under which he labored and the many obstacles en- 
countered, his is a remarkable record and has few if any parallels 
among the members of the legal profession in the field to which his 
practice is principally confined. 

Immediately after receiving his license, Mr. Schul entered upon 
the practice of law at Mount Vernon and in due time won a fair 
share of business and secured quite a large and lucrative clientele. 
Like the majority of young attorneys, however, he was obliged to 
enter a field already occupied by old and experienced practitioners, 
but nothing daunted, he strove earnestly in the face of opposition and 
it was not long until his ability was recognized and his progress was 
assured. In the meantime, he became interested in public matters 
and entering the political arena, soon rose to a place of influence in 
the Democratic party, his services to which led to his nomination and 
election in 1902, to the honorable and responsible office of County 
Judge. Mr. Schul's official career was eminently satisfactory and 
creditable and compares favorably with that of the many able men 
thus honored. He discharged his duties fairly and impartially, 
looked carefully after the interests of the county and strove by every 
laudable means to prove a worthy and acceptable official and a true 
servant of the public. Retiring from the office at the expiration of 
four years, he resumed the practice of his profession and now has an 

390 wall's history of jefferson cc, ill. 

extensive and profitable business, which is constantly growing in 
magnitude and importance, not only in his own city and county, but 
in other jurisdictions as well. As a lawyer, he ranks high and stands 
today among the leaders of the Jefferson County Bar. As already 
stated, he is a Democrat and has long been a power in local and 
state affairs, being a leader of his party in the county, besides wield- 
ing a wide influence in political circles throughout the state. He 
has been influential in party counsels for a number of years, serving 
from 1900 to 1902 inclusive, as Congressional Committeeman for 
the Twenty-third Congressional District and at the present time 
he is Judicial Committeeman of the Second Judicial Circuit, in both 
of which capacities his services have been valuable and highly ap- 
preciated. As a campaigner he has few equals in Southern Illinois, 
being not only a shrewd and judicious manager and tireless worker, 
but also a forcible, logical and eloquent speaker, his ability on the 
hustings causing large demands for his services in every political 
contest. Although active and influential as a politician, he is emi- 
nently honorable in his methods, never resorting to the questionable 
practices of the professional partisan, nor making use of any of the 
wiles and subterfuges of the demagogue. A man of strong char- 
acter and invincible integrity, he is popular with the people, irre- 
spective of party alignment and as an enterprising public-spirited citi- 
zen with the good of the community and the welfare of his fellow 
men ever at heart, no one today in the city of Mount Vernon stands 
higher in the esteem of the people or has shown himself more worthy 
of the regard in which he is held. 

In addition to his general practice, Mr. Schul is attorney and 
counsellor for several local and general enterprises, among which 
are : The American Security Company, the Purity Ice Cream Com- 
pany and the Kansas, Illinois Gas Company. He belongs to the 
Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, Knights of Pythias, Red 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 391 

Men and the American Home Circle, aside from which organizations 
he manifests a Hvely interest in the social and intellect life of Mount 
Vernon, besides giving his encouragement and support to all meas- 
ures and enterprises having for their object the material progress of 
the city and the moral advancement of the populace. Mr. Schul 
has never taken upon himself the duties and responsibilities of the 
marriage relation, nevertheless he is popular in the social circle and 
a hale fellow well met among his friends whom he numbers by the 
score and fastens to himself, as it were, with bands of steel. A 
sane, well rounded, forceful man, he has acted well his part in life 
and his past success and present high standing professionally and 
otherwise may be taken as an earnest of the still brighter laurels and 
greater honors which he is destined to achieve in coming years. 


With no intention of minimizing the justly earned fame of the 
many distinguished citizens who have figured in the history of Jef- 
ferson county, it can be truthfully stated that among their honored 
names none occupied a more prominent position, achieved greater 
success or were better beloved by their fellows than the late Charles 
H.Patton,of Mount Vernon, for many years one of the leading law- 
yers of Southern Illinois and admittedly the peer of any of his con- 
temporaries of the state in legal acumen and professional ability. 
Few men of his day were as widely and favorably known, none ex- 
ceeded him in those sterling qualities which make for noble manhood 
and a high standard of citizenship and when the historian of the 
future contemplates the good and the great whose deeds and in- 
fluence contributed to the progress of Illinois and gave the state her 

392 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

proud position among her sister commonwealths, his name will oc- 
cupy no mmor place in the category. 

In the life current of Charles H. Patton flowed the best blood 
of a long line of sturdy New England ancestry and to a marked de- 
gree he combined the sterling qualities and attributes for which his 
antecedents for many generations were distinguished. On the pa- 
ternal side his people were among the early English settlers of Con- 
necticut, the maternal branch of the family being traceable to a re- 
mote period in the history of Vermont. Eliphalet W. Patton, the 
father, was born October 5, 1805, in Hartford county, Connecti- 
cut, and when a young man married Miss Ladora A. Griswold, 
whose birth occurred in Burlington, Vermont, in the year 1814, and 
who became the mother of six children, the subject being the oldest 
of the family. Charles H. Patton, who was also a native of Hart- 
ford county, Connecticut, was born May 19, 1834, and the year 
following was taken by his parents to Ashtabula county, Ohio, where 
the family remained until removing in 1 862 to Jefferson county, 
Illinois. On coming to this state Eliphalet Patton purchased land 
in Dodds township and engaged in farming which vocation he con- 
tinued with gratifying success until his death on December 5th of 
the year 1881 . 

The early life of Charles H. Patton was spent on a farm in 
Ashtabula county, Ohio, where he grew to manhood under excel- 
lent home influences and while still a mere youth gave evidence of 
the strong mental and moral force which formed such a marked and 
influential characteristic of his more mature years. His father pro- 
vided for his educational training by procurring for him the ad- 
vantages of an academic course at Kingsville, Ohio, the preceptor 
being Zwinglass Graves, afterward president of the Female College 
of Lebanon, Pennsylvania, under whose direction he pursued his 
studies until acquiring a tolerably thorough knowledge of the ordi- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 393 

nary branches and an acquaintance with the classic language, mean- 
while he assisted in the cultivation of the farm, and by reason of 
being the oldest son, not a few of the responsibilities of the family 
naturally fell to him. After remaining with his parents until his 
eighteenth year he severed his home ties and shipped as a sailor on 
the Great Lakes, which vocation he followed during the three years 
ensuing and in which he acquired a valuable practical knowledge 
besides meeting with many interesting and not a few thrilling ex- 

On attaining his majority Mr. Patton quit the lake service and 
turned his attention to teaching, which line of work he followed for 
a few years for the purpose of fitting himself for a more permanent 
profession. His early predilections were in favor of the law and 
with this in view he exercised the strictest economy until saving suffi- 
cient from his earnings to defray his expenses while pursuing a pre- 
liminary course of reading in the office of Hon. L. A. Leonard, of 
Pierpont, Ohio, a prominent lawyer of that place and one of the 
distinguished jurists of the state. Under the able instruction of this 
learned Judge Mr. Patton made commendable progress and in due 
time was sufficiently advanced for admission to the bar, which for- 
mality took place on March 12th of the year 1862. The year prior 
to that date, however, he came to Jefferson county, Illinois, to look 
after his father's purchase until the latter could remove his family 
to the new home in the West, and in the winter follow- 
ing his admission to the bar, he taught school in Jefferson county, 
meanwhile maturing plans for engaging in his profession as soon as 

On the arrival of the family in 1 862 to take charge of the farm, 
Mr. Patton began the practice of law at Mount Vernon in partner- 
ship with Judge James M. Pollock, the firm thus constituted lasting 
until 1865, when the junior member was elected County Clerk, 

394 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

which office he held with ability and credit for a period of four years. 
Resuming his profession at the expiration of his official term in 1 869, 
Mr. Patton practiced alone until the following year when he formed 
a partnership with Judge Thomas S. Casey, which continued until 
1873, and during that time was not only one of the strongest law 
firms in Jefferson county but among the ablest in Southern Illinois, 
with a reputation by no means confined to state lines. Severing his 
connection with his associate in the year indicated, Mr. Patton again 
maintained an office of his own, and rose to a prominent position 
among the distinguished men of his profession in the West, his name 
for a number of years appearing in connection with the leading cases 
tried in the courts of Jefferson and neighboring counties while his 
services were frequently in demand in causes demanding a high 
order of legal talent, in other jurisdictions. By the unanimous ap- 
proval of the Mount Vernon Bar, he was chosen Master in Chan- 
cery, this signal mark of confidence on the part of his professional 
brethren bearing eloquent testimony to his eminent legal ability and 
to the high esteem in which he was held as a man and good citizen. 
Mr. Patton's career as a chancery and corporation lawyer gave 
him an honorable reputation in legal circles throughout the state and 
brought him in contact with some of the greatest men of his profes- 
sion in various parts of the Union. Wherever known his talents com- 
manded respect and for a number of years his name occupied a 
prominent place among the great legal minds of the Middle West as 
stated above, winning recognition in other and remoter parts of the 
country. He possessed in a marked degree those traits and abilities 
by which men make themselves masters of their fates. It is difficult 
to discover and define the hidden forces that move a life of ceaseless 
and varied activities ; little more can be done than to note their man- 
ifestations in his career; Mr. Patton mounted rapidly from one 
sphere of usefulness to another, always acquitting himself most hon- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 395 

orably and discharging worthily the duties of every station to which 
his fellow citizens called him. In his profession he attained a high 
rank, and for a series of years his position as leader of the Jefferson 
County Bar was never questioned. Firmly linked logic, also 
quick repartee and scathing criticism were at his command, while 
clear perception, perfect analysis, comprehensive thought, correct 
judgment and stainless integrity were among the more prominent 
characteristics of a professional career which brought credit to him- 
self and honor to the city in which his greatest success was achieved. 

He was not only an able and brilliant attorney but a public- 
spirited gentleman who enjoyed universal admiration and esteem and 
whose life was largely devoted to the public good. Those who 
knew him best were most profuse in their praise of his many sterling 
qualities and all who enjoyed the privilege of a personal acquaint- 
ance were made better by the association. Few men of Jefferson 
county were as widely known, none exceeded him in powers of mind 
and intellect and he was easily the peer of any of his professional 
contemporaries, in all that constituted a really good lawyer and dis- 
tinguished man of affairs. 

Mr. Patton was married November 17, 1854, to Miss Char- 
lotte Shave, of Bere Regis, Dorsetshire, England, who came to 
America with her parents in 1847 when eleven years of age, and 
grew to maturity in Jefferson county, Illinois. Her father, John 
Shave, and mother, who bore the maiden name of Charlotte Lane, 
were among the esteemed residents of the community in which they 
lived, but both have long been sleeping beneath the sod, their mem- 
ories being tenderly cherished by a grateful posterity. The follow- 
ing are the names of the children born to Mr. and Mrs. Patton: 
Dr. Fred W. Patton, a successful physician and surgeon of St. 
Louis, Missouri; Lulu L., wife of Stephen G. H. Taylor, of Mount 
Vernon; Lillie W., who married James G. Nugent, of St. Louis, 

3% wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

and Otto Charles Patton, who served as an officer in the Illinois 
National Guard, and with his company was among the first to enter 
the United States service in the late war with Spain. He took an 
honorable part in that struggle and at its close resigned his commis- 
sion and returned to his home in Mount Vernon where he has since 

Mr. Patton was a prominent member of the Masonic fraternity 
and rose to high rank in the order, Patton Commandery of Mount 
Vernon having been named in his honor. He was also actively 
identified with the Knights of Honor, did much for the success of 
the order in the state at large and exemplified in his relations with 
his fellow men the beautiful and sublime principles upon which both 
the above organizations are founded. Indeed he aided to the ex- 
tent of his ability all organizations and enterprises having for their 
object the advancement of the community and the material, social 
and moral welfare of his fellow men, contributed liberally to var- 
ious charitable and humanitarian projects and gave his influence to 
every worthy movement for the benefit of the race. His career was 
filled to repletion with activity and usefulness, and the limited space 
of this review does not permit of a detailed account of his distin- 
guished professional success or of the faithful services uniformly 
rendered to the many friends of the city of his residence, the state 
and nation. Few men lived such a happy life or were so blessed in 
their family and surroundings or had such absolute control of them- 
selves while serving with distinction their day and generation. Of 
pleasing presence and dignified demeanor he had massive mind and 
a heart in proportion thereto, and although a natural leader of men 
his kindly nature made him the friend and well wisher of the hum- 
blest of his fellows. 

The death of this eminent lawyer, able public official and dis- 
tinguished citizen, occurred on the 23d day of December, 1901 , and 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 397 

was not only a loss to his county and state but the nation as well. 
Mrs. Patton, who is still living, resides in Mount Vernon, and is 
highly esteemed by the best people of the city for her many esti- 
mable qualities of mind and heart. 


Early pioneer experiences, brilliant service in two wars, prom- 
inence and usefulness as legislators, physicians and lawyers, dis- 
tinguished connection with the industrial and social development of 
the community, constitute the proud record of the Green family, so 
long and favorably known in Southern Illinois. Dr. Duff Green, 
founder of the state branch of the family, served for some years as 
lieutenant in the regular army. During the War of 1812. he held 
the rank of surgeon in Barbee's regiment, Kentucky Volunteer In- 
fantry, and made a fine record for gallantry and usefulness. At a 
subsequent period he located at Danville, Kentucky, where he prac- 
ticed medicine until the summer of 1 844, when he removed to Pu- 
laski, Tennessee. Two years later he migrated to Mount Vernon, Illi- 
nois, where he ended his days at the age of seventy-three. His wife, 
Lucy, survived him many years, being eighty-three years old at the 
time of her death. He left a son, Willis Duff Green, who was des- 
tined to achieve professional eminence and become one of the most 
eminent men of his day. Born in Kentucky, he received his scholas- 
tic education at Centre College, in his native town and entered Tran- 
sylvania University at Lexington to take an initial course in the study 
of medicine. Later he became a student at the Cincinnati Medical 
College and graduated from that institution in the class of 1844. 
Shortly afterward he located at Mount Vernon, where, for nearly 

398 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

half a century he was recognized as the leading physician. He was 
one of the most successful practitioners in the Southern part of the 
state and became widely famed for his skill and ability. He was 
president of the company which built the first railroad into Mount 
Vernon and in many ways exhibited his public spirit. He was a 
prominent Odd Fellow — became Grand Master of the state in 1 858 
and was sent as grand representative to the national convention of 
the order in 1 859. For many years he was a conspicuous leader in 
Democratic politics and was delegate to the national convention that 
nominated Samuel J. Tilden for the Presidency in 1876. In 1845 
he was married in Kentucky to Corinna L., daughter of Isaac Mor- 
ton, a prominent merchant of Hartford. By this union there were 
ten children, several of whom rose to distinction. Alfred M. Green, 
the eldest, served as State's Attorney of Jefferson county and as a 
member of the Legislature. At present he is a leading lawyer of 
Gainesville, Texas. Earl Green, the fourth son in order of birth, 
now a prominent physician of Mount Vernon, was graduated from 
the University of Michigan and Bellevue College in New York and 
later studied medicine in Vienna, Paris and London. Inez I. Green, 
the eldest daughter, is an instructor in the Southern Illinois Normal 
at Carbondale. Among the other children are Duff, Laura Reed, 
Cora Lee, Minnie and Maidelyn F. William H. Green, the second 
son, was born at Mount Vernon, Jefferson county, Illinois. After 
the usual course in the public schools he entered the Law School at 
Ann Arbor, Michigan, from which in due time he obtained his de- 
gree as Bachelor of Laws. Shortly afterward he was admitted to 
the bar of his native city and served one term as Master in Chancery. 
In 1 882 he was elected City Attorney and while serving in this office 
was elected State's Attorney in 1 884, re-elected in 1 888. and filled 
the place altogether for eight years. In 1 894 he was elected to the 
Legislature from his district and became recognized as one of the 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 399 

most forceful speakers of the body. He is an ardent Democrat 
and has always taken an active part in politics of the state. In 1896 
Mr. Green was a delegate to the Democratic National Convention 
at Chicago, when William Jennings Bryan was first nominated for 
the Presidency. Later Mr. Green was selected as a member of the 
Illinois contingent of the notification committee and attended the 
ceremonies which were held in Madison Square Garden, New York. 
He IS one of the busiest men of the Mount Vernon Bar, but his 
activities are by no means confined to his professional duties. He is 
a president of the Jefferson State Bank and holds the same position 
with the Illinois Banker's Fire Insurance Company, of Mount Ver- 
non. As a lawyer he ranks among the best of an unusuall> strong 
bar and as a citizen he stands with those who have achieved prom- 
inence in the social, fraternal and political history of his county. He 
is a gentleman of fine address, popular manners, possessed of ver- 
satile powers as a public speaker and recognized as a leader in all 


Standing out distinctly as one of the central figures in the his- 
tory of Jefferson county is the name which introduces this sketch, a 
name better known perhaps than any other in the specific line of en- 
deavor with which it was so long and so honorably identified. Prom- 
inent in local business circles and equally so in other than his own 
field of effort, with a reputation in one of the most responsible and 
exacting callings which won him a name for distinguished service, 
second to none of his contemporaries there was not in his day a more 
enterprising and successful man than Christopher D. Ham, and it is 
with pardonable pride that the people of his native county revere 

400 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

his memory and ascribe to him high honor as one of their leading 
citizens. Mr. Ham, for many years an influential factor in the finan- 
cial affairs of Jefferson county, belonged to an old and widely known 
family whose earliest representatives in Illinois appear to have been 
Moses and James Ham, natives of Virginia, who migrated west- 
ward in the pioneer period and settled in Jefferson county where in 
due time both became large cattle owners and prominent in public 
affairs. Moses Ham, the father of James, and grandfather of our 
subject, took an active part in county affairs, accumulated a hand- 
some competency and stamped his individuality upon the community 
in which he lived as one of the influential men of his day and gener- 
ation. James Ham was in the prime of life when he came to Jef- 
ferson county and like his father bore a prominent part in the settle- 
ment of the country and the development of its resources. He, too, 
became a noted figure in the early history of the county and for a 
number of years was one of its leading citizens and well-to-do men. 
In addition to large agricultural interests he conducted for some time 
a very successful mercantile business and later established a tannery, 
one of the first in the county, which like his other enterprises proved 
the source of a very liberal income. 

Christopher Devalcourt Ham, son of James and Frances 
(Crisel) Flam, was born in Jefferson county, Illinois, September 10, 
1838, and spent his childhood on the family homestead at Ham's 
Grove near the site of the present town of Opdyke. His early en- 
vironment was conducive to moral as well as mental development, 
his home influence being such as to implant in his mind and heart 
those principles of rectitude which make for strong character and 
well rounded manhood, and while still young he laid broad and deep 
the foundation upon which his subsequent career was so solidly 
builded. With the object in view of fitting him for the legal pro- 
fession his parents gave him the best educational advantages the 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 401 

country afforded and after the usual intellectual course in the schools 
of his own county and higher institutions elsewhere he entered the 
Law School of Cincinnati and in due time was graduated therefrom 
with a creditable record and was licensed to practice by the Supreme 
Court. Having no taste for the profession, however, he did not en- 
gage in the practice, but turning his attention to a pursuit more in 
harmony with his inclinations he soon became one of the leading 
merchants of Mount Vernon and made an honorable name in the 
business world. In connection with merchandising he was also en- 
gaged in the manufacture of woolen goods, and during the period 
of the Civil war conducted a very profitable business in this line in 
partnership with James D. Johnson, the firm thus constituted operat- 
ing for several years the woolen mills at Mount Vernon. After a 
long and remarkably successful career as a merchant. Mr. Ham 
turned his attention to another important business enterprise, having 
been one of the leading movers in the organization of the old Carlin- 
Cross Bank, which subsequently became the Mount Vernon Bank 
and still later was re-organized as the Ham National Bank. He 
served as president of the institution, always kept in close touch with 
its affairs and to him as much as to any other man was due the rapid 
growth and continued success of the bank, during the early years of 
its history. 

Mr. Ham was remarkably successful in his business affairs and 
everything to which he devoted his energies appears to have worked 
to his advantage. He was not only fortunate in a monetary sense 
but also manifested an abiding interest in whatever tended to ad- 
vance his city and county materially and otherwise and for a number 
of years took an active part in public matters, serving several suc- 
cessive terms as a member of the local school board besides filling 
other positions of responsibility and trust. 

The maiden name of Mrs. Christopher D. Ham was Helena 

402 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

Ann Grant. She was the daughter of Angus McNeil Grant, who 
came to lUinois from Kentucky about the year 1835 and subse- 
quently became one of the leading business men of Jefferson county. 
Seven children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Ham, only three of 
whom survive, namely : Mrs. Martha Ham Pavey, of Mount Ver- 
non, whose husband, Louis G. Pavey, is cashier of the Ham Na- 
tional Bank; Sidney Breese Ham, a sketch of whom appears else- 
where, and Grant Taylor Ham, president of the Mount Vernon 
Brick Company and one of the city's most enterprising citizens. 
Three children died in infancy and Bernadine after reaching the 
age of young womanhood. Mr. Ham's distinguished business career 
has few parallels in the history of Jefferson county and he will live 
in the memory of his fellow citizens of Mount Vernon as one who 
contributed liberally toward the growth of the city and gave stabil- 
ity to its business and financial interests. He died at Eureka Springs, 
Arkansas, April I 7, 1 899, and left to his family and the community 
the heritage of a well spent life and an honorable name. 

Christopher was one of three children, a sister having died 
while still quite young; and O. M. D. Ham, of Mount Vernon, 
the only surviving member of this old and highly esteemed family 
whose history during the last three quarters of a century has been 
closely identified with that of Jefferson county. 

Angus McNeil Grant, father of Mrs. C. D. Ham, was an 
early settler of Jefferson county and one of her men of influence. 
His arrival, as already indicated, was about the year 1835, 
and in the course of a few years he became the possessor of a large 
amount of land, which soon increased greatly in value and to him 
also belongs the credit of adding very materially to the growth and 
business interests of the county seat. Soon after locating at Mount 
Vernon he engaged in merchandising which he carried on with 
marked success for a number of years and at one time he held the 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., iLL. 403 

office of County Judge, besides being honored with various other 
positions and taking an influential part in pubhc affairs. He was 
one of the organizers and first president of the Carhn-Cross Bank, 
the first institution of the kind in Mount Vernon and for a number 
of years thereafter kept in close touch with monetary affairs and was 
long regarded as one of the sound, far-seeing and successful finan- 
ciers of Jefferson county, and Southern Illinois. Despite his frail 
physique and modest demeanor he was an influential factor in pro- 
moting the advancement of Mount Vernon and the welfare of the 
people and to him as much as to any one man is the city indebted 
for its continuous growth and the prosperity for which it is now dis- 
tinguished. Mr. Grant possessed business ability of a superior order 
and was also noted for his inflexible integrity and the high sense of 
honor which characterized all his relations with his fellow men. A 
man of noble aims and high ideals, he made his influence felt for 
good in business as well as in social and religious circles and for 
many years he was a noted character in his city and county and as a 
leader in the world of finance. 

When a young man Mr. Grant married Miss Martha Ander- 
son, of Tennessee, who proved a true wife and helpmeet until her 
lamented death in the year 1883, and who bore him three children: 
Mrs. Helena Ann Ham, of Mount Vernon; Mrs. M. M. Pool, of 
the same place, and Mrs. W. C. Pollock, who lives in Washington, 
D. C. Mr. Grant's long connection with the banking interests of 
Mount Vernon added much to the financial credit of the city and 
gave it an honorable reputation as a safe place for the judicious in- 
vestment of capital as well as a desirable and attractive place of 
residence. He was always enterprising and public-spirited and gave 
his hearty support to all enterprises that tended to the advancement 
and progress of his fellow men. 

404 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 


This representative business man and ex-county official fills a 
conspicuous place in the public life of Mount Vernon and it is with 
no little satisfaction that the following brief review of his career is al- 
lotted a place among those of the leading men of his city and county. 
The family of which Charles R. Keller is an honorable representa- 
tive, is of Southern origin, and early in the eighteenth century the 
name was familiar in various parts of North Carolina, the state in 
which the subject's grandfather, John Keller, was born and reared. 
This ancestor, whose birth occurred on July 1 7, 1 804, moved with 
his parents to Bedford county, Tennessee, in 1814, and after a resi- 
dence of about twenty years in the latter state he removed with his 
family to Jefferson county, Illinois, settling in 1841 in Elk Prairie 
township where he purchased land and engaged in agricultural pur- 
suits. In 1 847 he joined the United States army to take part in the 
war with Mexico, but shortly after reaching the scene of action con- 
tracted a disease which resulted in his death at the city of Jalapa, 
in January of the year following his enlistment. 

Mary Nees, wife of John Keller, was born in Lincoln county, 
Tennessee, in 1805, and departed this life in Jefferson county, Illi- 
nois, December, 1 869. She bore her husband ten children, among 
whom was a son by the name of Willis A. Keller, whose birth oc- 
curred in Lincoln county, Tennessee, July 1 , 1 826, and who in 
1841 accompanied his parents to Jefferson county, Illinois and grew 
to maturity in Elk Prairie township. Owing to unfavorable circum- 
stances his educational training was but limited and at the age of 
ten years he left home to make his own way in the world, by work- 
ing on a farm at very small wages. After continuing this kind of 
labor until his nineteenth year he married and set up a domestic 
establishment of his own on rented land, the lady who became his 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO.. ILL. 405 

wife being Miss Mary Dodds, and the date on which the ceremony 
took place, the 7th of January, 1846. 

WiUis A. Keller began farming for himself under circum- 
stances which to most men would have been considered decidedly 
discouraging, but to one of his energy and optimism, the future ap- 
peared bright with promise, notwithstanding the sum total of his 
earthly capital at that time amounted to less than ten dollars. With 
a determination which knew no such word as fail, he resolutely ad- 
dressed himself to his labors, and in due time succeeded in bettering 
his condition and laying the foundation of a career which ultimately 
resulted in one of the largest private fortunes in his township and 
earning for him much more than local repute as a progressive farmer 
and public-spirited citizen. Mr. Keller's industry became prover- 
bial in his neighborhood and his economy, sound judgment and excel- 
lent management bore their legitimate fruits in a competency which 
not only placed him in independent circumstances but as stated above 
made him one of the financially solid and reliable men of the coun- 
ty. From the modest beginning alluded to he added to his savings 
until able to purchase land of his own from which time his advance- 
ment was more rapid and some idea of his success may be obtamed 
from the fact of his having accumulated a large and valuable es- 
tate ere he passed the years of his prime, his realty at one time in 
Jefferson county amounting to considerable in excess of one thou- 
sand acres of land to say nothing of valubale personal property and 
other private interests which tended to augment his fortune. Mrs. 
Mary (Dodds) Keller, who was born in Kentucky, November 29, 
1829, died in Jefferson county, Illinois, July, 1865, leaving these 
children, namely: Sarah E., wife of George W. Yost; Judge C. A. 
Keller, of San Antonio, Texas; Amanda, who married Robert 
Lloyd, and Minnie, now Mrs. Julian Frochock, and Carrie Fly, 
wife of W. S. Fly. 

406 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

In the year 1866 Willis Keller was united in marriage with 
Mrs. Lucy Jane (Adams) Rentchler, who bore him children as 
follows: Mrs. Mary J. Maxey, Mrs. Luphemia Jones, and Charles 
R. Keller, whose name introduces this sketch, all living in Mount 
Vernon and highly esteemd by the best people of the city. 

Charles R.Keller, to a brief review of whose career the reader's 
attention is herewith respectfully invited, was born in Mount Ver- 
non on the 18th day of April, 1872, and spent his early life in the 
city and on his father's farm, his experience in the country having a 
decided influence in fostering habits of industry and teaching les- 
sons of self-reliance which subsequently resulted so greatly to his 
advantage. At the proper age he entered the public schools of his 
native place, between which and the country districts he devoted 
the time until completing the prescribed course when he became a 
student in the Southern Illinois Normal School at Carbondale, where 
he prosecuted his studies for a period of two years, during which 
time he made commendable progress and earned a creditable record. 
On leaving the above institution Mr. Keller yielded to a predilec- 
tion in favor of a business life, accepting a clerkship with the mer- 
cantile firm of Culli Brothers & McAtee, of Mount Vernon, in 
whose employ he continued from 1890 until 1896, when he re- 
signed his position to enter upon his duties as Clerk of the Circuit 
Court, to which office he was elected in the fall of the latter year. 
From his youth he had manifested a lively interest in public affairs 
and on attaining his majority became influential in political circles 
and one of the rising young Democrats of Jefferson county, and 
when it became necessary to select a candidate for the important 
and responsible office of Circuit Clerk, attention was directed to him 
as the most available man to select, and it was not long until his 
party friends rallied to his support and his nomination, his election 
following as a matter of course, not altogether, however, on account 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 407 

of the normally large Democratic majority but by reason of his 
great personal popularity and eminent fitness for the position as 

Mr. Keller's official career proving creditable to himself and 
acceptable to the public he was renominated at the expiration of his 
term and in the election of 1900 was again victorious, defeating his 
competitor by a decisive majority and during his second incumbency 
proving an able and faithful public servant whose record fully met 
the expectations of the people. On retiring from the clerkship Mr. 
Keller devoted two years to the grocery business but at the expira- 
tion of that time severed his connection with merchandising and in 
1906 entered the Ham National Bank as assistant cashier, which 
position he still worthily holds. In his present capacity as in his 
official relations with the public he discharges his duties in the faith- 
ful and conscientious manner characteristic of the man, demonstrat- 
ing clerical abilities of a high order and a familiarity with finance 
and matters relating thereto which render his services especially valu- 
able to the management of the institution with which he is identified. 

Mr. Keller is a gentleman of high character and strict integ- 
rity whose worth has been duly appreciated and rewarded and 
whose name has ever been above the suspicion of dishonor. The 
universal esteem in which he is held by the people of his city and 
county bears eloquent testimony to his many sterling qualities while 
the honors conferred upon him by his fellow citizens and the con- 
fidence reposed in him by his present employers show him to be 
loyal to every trust and worthy of the support and confidence with 
which he is regarded. Despite the fact of his never having, assumed 
the duties and responsibilities of the marriage relation Mr. Keller 
is an influential factor in the social life of Mount Vernon and takes 
an active interest in all movements having for their object the ame- 
lioration of the human ills, and the general prosperity and welfare 

408 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

of the body politic. Fraternally he is identified with the Knights 
of Pythias, the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, the Inde- 
pendent Order of Odd Fellows, and the Fraternal Order of Eagles, 
in all of which organizations he takes a leading part besides being 
honored with important positions from time to time. 


An enumeration of the men who won honor and public recogni- 
tion and added to the reputation of the communities in which they 
acted their parts in life would be incomplete without specific men- 
tion of the well remembered citizen whose career is briefly reviewed 
in the following lines — a gentleman, who, by the master strokes of 
strong mentality, backed by sheer force of will, rose to an honorable 
position in Jefferson county and achieved more than local prom- 
inence in the various lines of activity to which his energies were de- 
voted. John Stewart Bogan was a native of Shenandoah county, 
Virginia, and the oldest of a family of twelve children, whose par- 
ents, Benjamin and Sarah A. (Ott) Bogan, were also born in the 
Old Dominion state, the father in Spottsylvania county, December 
30, 1795, the mother in the town of Woodstock on April 18th of 
the year 1801. The subject, whose birth occurred in Woodstock 
on the 6th day of March, 1820, spent his early hfe in his native 
town, but when a mere youth accompanied his parents on their re- 
moval to Washington, D. C, where in due time he entered upon 
an apprenticeship to learn the printer's trade. The office in which 
he laid the foundation for his subsequent career as a journalist was 
conducted by Blair & Reed, one of the old reliable publishing firms 
of the national capital, the Washington Globe, which they issued. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 409 

having long been one of the most noted and influential political news- 
papers in the United States. Frank P. Blair, one of the editors at 
that time, one of the strong and forceful men in the field of journa- 
lism, subsequently became a prominent figure in public affairs, serv- 
ing with distinction as major-general during the War of the Re- 
bellion, and afterwards achieving an honorable record in the Na- 
tional Congress, besides running for the Vice-Presidency on the 
ticket with Horatio Seymour. During John S. Bogan's apprentice- 
ship, he became well acquainted with many of the distinguished 
men of the country and it frequently fell to him to carry proof sheets 
to such public characters as Henry Clay, General McComb, secre- 
tary of the treasury; Gen. Lewis Cass, secretary of war; John For- 
sythe, secretary of state, and a number of others who contributed 
articles to the Globe, and bore leading parts in the history of the 
nation at that time. After completing his period of service and be- 
coming a proficient typo, Mr. Bogan took a case in the office of the 
Globe and at the end of four years resigned his position on account 
of ill health and about 1 843 engaged in agricultural pursuits a few 
miles from the Capital City. Thinking to better his condition in 
the West where he was satisfied more favorable opportunities 
awaited young men with ambition to rise in the world Mr. Bogan 
after a few years disposed of his interests in Maryland and came 
to Jefferson county, Illinois, casting his lot among the people at 
Grand Prairie, where he resumed farming and continued to reside 
until 1851, when he gave up the pursuit of agriculture and moved 
to Mount Vernon. Shortly after locating at the seat of justice, he 
established the first newspaper ever published in Jefferson county, 
giving to the new publication the appropriate name of "The Jef- 
fersonian," and bringing to the enterprise a practical experience 
which augured well for its success. Under his able business and 
editorial management, the paper grew steadily, if at first somewhat 

410 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

slowly in public favor, but during the succeeding two years the cir- 
culation and advertising patronage were such as to put the enter- 
prise on a paying basis, and it became a welcome visitor to the ma- 
jority of homes in the county, and quite popular. 

Through the medium of the Jeffersonian Mr. Bogan soon be- 
came one of the influential party leaders of the county, the name of 
the paper indicating his political faith, and giving him prestige in 
local Democratic circles. In recognition of valuable political ser- 
vices, he was nominated in 1 854 for the office of Clerk of the Cir- 
cuit Court, and his triumphant election the same year and the able 
and faithful manner in which he conducted the office during his 
first term paved the way for subsequent re-nominations as is indicated 
by the fact that during the thirty-four years ensuing he was regularly 
re-elected to the position and held it with credit to himself and to the 
entire satisfaction of the public. Mr. Bogan's continuous retention in 
one of the most responsible offices within the gift of the people at- 
tests the high esteem in which he was held, regardless of party ties, 
the most signal instance of public confidence being afforded by the 
campaign of 1 860, when his election lacked but three votes of being 
unanimous. On learning the result of this election his father, then 
living in Washington City, was so elated that he showed the returns 
to his warm personal and political friend Hon. Stephen A, Doug- 
las, with the comment that, "His scrub boy in Illinois could make a 
much better race for his office than the popular 'Little Giant' could 
for the Presidency." Mr. Bogan proved an able and popular offi- 
cial and his long period of service during which his duty was ever 
worthily discharged, and his record above criticism, has few, if any 
parallels, in the history of the state. In addition to his official func- 
tions he took an active interest in other enterprises and put forth 
every effort at his command to promote the material prosperity of 
Mount Vernon and Jefferson county and the welfare of the people. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 41 1 

On voluntarily retiring from the clerkship in 1 888 he turned his at- 
tention to other lines of business and from that time until his la- 
mented death he was a prominent and influential figure in the civic 
life of the community and a leader in public affairs. He assisted 
in establishing the Jefferson County Agricultural Society and for a 
period of thirty years served as its secretary and to him also belongs 
the credit of being one of the founders of the First Presbyterian 
church of Mount Vernon and an early member of the Lodge, No. 
13, Independent Order of Odd Fellows, of the same city. He al- 
ways looked after the interests of these organizations and contributed 
as much perhaps as any other man to their growth and success and 
as an humble and sincere Christian his everyday life beautifully 
exemplified the teachings of the great head of the church and in- 
duced many to abandon the ways of sin and seek the higher way 
which leads to happiness and peace. 

On September 20, 1842, in Montgomery county, Maryland, 
John S. Bogan and Louisa M. Brunet were united in the holy bonds 
of wedlock, the ceremony being solemnized by the Rev. John C. 
Smith, a distinguished Presbyterian divine of Washington City, and 
for several years a warm friend and trusted adviser of President 
Lincoln. This union, which proved almost ideally happy, resulted 
in the birth of eleven children, and was terminated by the hand of 
death several years after the devoted and beloved old couple had 
celebrated the fiftieth anniversary of their marriage. The names of 
the children born to them, all of whom are living, are as follows: 
Mrs. Sarah E. Goodale, Mrs. Mary C. Goodrich, Mrs. Anna L. 
Pace, W. V. Bogan and J. F. Bogan. 

Mr. Bogan departed this life February 19, 1900, and his death 
was the occasion of universal sorrow throughout Jefferson county, 
in all parts of which he was well known and highly esteemed. The 
following tribute to his worth as a man and citizen which appeared 

412 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

in the Mount Vernon News immediately after his demise is ap- 
propriate in this connection: 

"When Uncle Johnny Bogan breathed his last, one of na- 
ture's noblemen and one of Jefferson county's grand old men passed 
to his eternal reward. No man was better known and more highly 
respected by all classes and conditions of our people. He was a 
firm and steadfast friend, and is not known to have had an enemy 
in the world. He did not measure men by their standing in society 
or the official positions they occupied or the wealth of this world's 
goods they possessed, and while he numbered as his friends all in 
these circles with whom he had an acquaintance, he was the especial 
friend and champion of the poor and lowly, the down trodden and 
oppressed. No one of this class ever appealed to him in vain for 
sympathy or assistance. He made lots of money in his time but 
invariably divided to the last farthing with the needy and suffering, 
and died a comparatively poor man. The death of such a public 
benefactor is of course universally regretted. His whole life was 
devoted to making others happy. He lost sight of self and abso- 
lutely stinted himself that he might contribute to the relief of others." 


A prominent citizen and successful business man, of Mount 
Vernon. Few residents of Jefferson county are as well known and 
highly esteemed as J. R. Allen, to whom more, perhaps, than to any 
other is the city indebted for its present reputation as an important 
business center, and the county for the continuous prosperity which 
has characterized its history in recent years. Mr. Allen has been a 
life long resident of Jefferson county and belongs to one of the oldest 
families in this part of Illinois. When the country was still a wilder- 
ness, in which dwelt wild animals and trodden by the feet of the 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 413 

savage, one, Rhodam Allen, a native of Tennessee, and a typical 
pioneer, settled in what is now known as Jefferson county in 1819. 
At the time of his arrival there were only a few sparse settlements 
within the present bounds of the county and during the first few 
years he experienced all the hardships and vicissitudes incident to life 
in a new and undeveloped country. He died many years ago 
and was the first person laid to rest in the Old Union grave yard, 
the first place in Jefferson county consecrated to the burial of the 

Rev. Rhodam Allen, a son of the above, came to Jefferson 
county with his parents and in due time became one of the most 
noted Methodist divines of his day. He was among the first to 
preach the Gospel in this part of Illinois and during a long, active 
and very successful ministry organized a number of churches in var- 
ious parts of the state and led thousands of his fellow men into the 
kingdom of God. He nas not only a preacher of wide repute and 
much more than ordinary ability and power, but was honored as a 
citizen and a leader in many important enterprises. He was called 
from the scenes of his earthly labors amid triumphs after a long and 
useful life, dying early in the fifties and leaving to his descendants 
the memory of an honored name which they value as a priceless 

Among the children of Rev. Rhodam Allen was a son by the 
name of George W., who was born in Tennessee in 1810, and at 
the age of nine came to Illinois with his parents and from that time 
until death, in the year 1 866, was an honored and influential citi- 
zen of Jefferson county. Eliza M. Daniels, wife of George Allen, 
was born in Kentucky and spent the greater part of her life in Jef- 
ferson county, Illinois, and survived her husband but a short time, 
dying in 1867. This couple were the parents of eight children 
whose names are as follows: Caroline P. died in the year 1908; 
John R., whose name introduces this sketch; Mary, deceased; Mrs. 

414 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

Sarah Ferguson; Thomas C. ; Charles Wesley, deceased; Juliet O., 
deceased; and an infant son that died unnamed. 

John R. Allen was born October 1 0, 1 836, in Jefferson coun- 
ty, Illinois, and spent his early years in close touch with nature on 
the farm, where he learned the lessons of industry and thrift and 
self-reliance, which had much to do in shaping his subsequent life. 
In the country school near the homestead he obtained a knowledge of 
the common English branches and later attended a six-months term 
in Mount Vernon, which terminated his educational experiences. 
Reared to agricultural pursuits and to habits of industry he bore his 
part in the cultivating of the farm and like a dutiful son with the 
interests of his parents at heart, did not leave home on attaining his 
majority as most young men do, but remained with his father until 
his twenty-fifth year, taking upon himself many of the latter's bur- 
dens and responsibilities. In 1861, when treason grew bold and 
threatened to disrupt the Union, Mr. Allen did not long hesitate be- 
tween the comforts and restfulness of home and the hardships and 
dangers of war; appreciating the perils which menaced the govern- 
ment he enlisted that year in the Sixtieth Illinois Infantry and within 
a comparatively short time accompanied his command to the front 
where during the three years following he shared with his comrades 
all the varied experiences of camp-march, campaign and battle, 
throughout all of which he discharged his duty ably and faithfully 
and earned an honorable record as a defender of the flag. His regi- 
ment was in the Army of the Cumberland and he took part in all 
the battles in which it was engaged, including Missionary Ridge, 
Dalton, Rocky-face Gap, and other engagements of the Atlanta 
campaign, receiving in the action last named a painful gunshot 
wound in the hand. After the fall of Atlanta he marched with 
Sherman's army to the sea, and at the close of the war returned to 
Jefferson county and in a short time thereafter engaged in merchan- 
dising at Mount Vernon, where during the fifteen years ensuing he 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 415 

did a thriving trade and became one of the leading business men of 
the city. 

At the expiration of the time indicated Mr. Allen embarked 
in the grain business in connection with which he also operated a 
mill, the two enterprises engaging his attention for a period of four- 
teen years and proving very profitable. Possessing mature judgment 
and business ability of a high order he so managed his various in- 
terests as to realize liberal returns and at the end of the time was 
enabled to discontmue dealing in gram and to retire with a comfort- 
able competency, though he still retains his milling interests besides 
being identified with several local enterprises which yield him an 
ample income. In 1901 he assisted in organizing the Third National 
Bank of Mount Vernon and was elected the first president of the in- 
stitution. In office he demonstrated rare executive capacity and did 
much to popularize the institution and make it one of the most suc- 
cessful banks in the southern part of the state. He is still a member 
of the board of directors and as such devotes considerable atten- 
tion to financial matters causing his services to be greatly appreciated 
by officials and stockholders and others interested in the institution. 

Mr. Allen was also an influential spirit in establishing the 
Mount Vernon Car Manufacturing Company, one of the largest in- 
dustrial enterprises in the city, and has been a director of the same 
^ver since it began operations. He is president of the Mount Ver- 
non Ice & Storage Company, sustains the same relation to the Jef- 
ferson Milling Company. In addition to these interests he also owns 
considerable real estate. His business career has been characterized 
by continuous prosperity and he is now one of the solid men of the 
city and county with a reputation in financial circles much more than 

As a citizen he ranks among the most enterprising and prog- 
ressive in this part of the state, being wide-awake and public-spirited, 
alive to every interest calculated to promote the advancement of the 

416 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

community and benefit his fellow men. Although practically retired 
so far as active participation in business is concerned he keeps in 
close touch with the world of affairs and the trend of modern 
thoughts, being well informed on the leading questions and issues 
before the people and an intelligent observer whose counsel and 
advise on many subjects carry weight and influence. 

The domestic chapter in Mr. Allen's history dates from 1876, 
when he was united in the bonds of wedlock with Miss Belle 
Maxey, the daughter of Charles H. and Sarah Maxey, of Mount 
Vernon, the Maxey's being among the prominent pioneer families 
of Jefferson county and for many years actively identified with the 
growth and development of the country. 

Four children have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Allen, two of 
whom are living, viz., Albert, of Mount Vernon, and Alice, who 
married Dr. Charles W. Hall, one of the leading physicians and 
surgeons of the city, Mrs. Hall being the youngest of the family, and 
her brother third in order of birth. Herbert and George H., both 
deceased, were the oldest children. 

Mr. Allen is a Republican and well versed in politics, but 
aside from servmg several terms as Alderman has held no elective 
office nor aspired to public position. He belongs to the Grand 
Army of the Republic and is a consistent member of the Methodist 
Episcopal church, with which religious body his wife and children 
are also identified. 


As a lawyer and public official, G. Gale Gilbert, of Mount 
Vernon, ranks with the distinguished citizens of Jefferson county 
and occupies a conspicuous place among the leading men of his pro- 
fession in Southern Illinois. No other resident of the community is 






wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., !LL. 417 

more actively identified with its development and progress and none 
has so indelibly impressed his personality upon the city of his resi- 
dence or exercised a stronger influence in directing enterprises which 
tend to the advancement of its business interests. The Gilbert fam- 
ily is the oldest in this part of the state, its history and the 
history of Jefferson county, being very closely interwoven ever since 
the pioneer period. The first of the name of which anything definite 
is known, appears to have been one Eli Gilbert, a native of Maine 
and a representative of one of the old English families of that com- 
monwealth. He migrated to Ohio many years ago, in which state 
his son, Philo Gilbert, grandfather of the subject, was born and 
reared. Shortly after Southern Illinois was opened for settlement, 
Philo Gilbert moved to Jefferson county, purchased a tract of gov- 
ernment land in what is now McClellan township and in due time de- 
veloped a good farm and became one of the leading citizens of the 
community. He was among the first settlers of the above township, 
took an active part in opening the county's resources and as an en- 
terprising man of affairs, weilded a wide influence and was univer- 
sally respected. Among his children was a son by the name of 
James Eli Gilbert, whose birth occurred on the family homestead in 
McClellan township and who also became a tiller of the soil and a 
citizen of much more than average intelligence and influence. A 
successful farmer and stock raiser, he was also an active participant 
in public affairs, having served the people of his township in various 
official positions, including among others that of School Treasurer 
and Tax Collector and some time in the "eighties" he was the Re- 
publican nominee for County Treasurer, but failed of election by 
reason of the overwhelming strength of the opposition. He was a 
man of strong character, honorable in all of his dealings and was 
always held in the highest esteem by his neighbors and fellow citi- 
zens. He spent his entire life near the place of his birth and was 
called from earth August 28, 1 889. 


418 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

Susan Ford, wife of James E. Gilbert, was born in Jefferson 
county, Illinois, and departed this life in the year i 880. Her father, 
Solomon Ford, a native of North Carolina, moved his family to 
Jefferson county in an early day and here spent the remainder of his 
life, living to an advanced age. The reputation of his family is sec- 
ond to that of no other in the county. James E. and Susan Gilbert 
were the parents of five children, the subject of this sketch being the 
oldest of the family. The others are: Mrs. Eunice S. Louth, of 
Mount Vernon ; John P. Gilbert, a professor in the State University 
at Urbana; Mrs. Hattie C. Schaffer, of Princeton, Indiana; and 
Menzis E. Gilbert, a druggist, of Jacksonville, this state. Some 
time after the death of the mother of these children, Mr. Gilbert 
married Emily A. Gillett, of Saline county, Illinois, who bore him 
three children, namely: Arthur, of Centralia, and Mrs. Gertrude 
Farris and Glen Gilbert, of Mount Vernon. 

G. Gale Gilbert, whose birth occurred in McClellan township 
on the 27th of November, 1867, spent his early life on the family 
homestead and while still a lad became familiar with the rugged 
duties of the farm. Reared under wholesome home influences, he 
early acquired habits of industry and grew up with a proper appre- 
ciation of the dignity of honest toil. At the proper age he attended 
the public schools of his neighborhood and later took a high school 
course in Mount Vernon, the discipline thus received being after- 
wards supplemented by a more thorough training in the Southern 
Illinois University at Carbondale, where he made commendable 
progress in his studies and earned an honorable record as a diligent 
and enterprising student. 

Having decided to make the legal profession his life work, Mr. 
Gilbert, shortly after finishing his scholastic education, entered the 
office of N. H. Moss, of Mount Vernon, under whose able in- 
struction he continued until his admission to the bar on May 7, 1891 , 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 419 

since which date he has forged rapidly to the front as a capable 
lawyer and judicious practitioner, being at this time recognized as 
one of the leading members of his profession m the field to which 
his talents are principally confined. His career presents a series of 
continued successes such as few men of his age and experience at- 
tain and during the last ten years, few important cases have been 
tried in the courts of Jefferson county m which he has not appeared 
as counsel, besides being interested in a large and growing legal busi- 
ness in neighbormg counties. 

Mr. Gilbert has never ceased being a student, and his aim has 
been to become a good lawyer and stand as near as possible in the 
very front ranks of his profession. To this end he keeps in close 
touch with the trend of current legal thought and familiar with the 
leading authorities, this with his knowledge of the basic principles 
of jurisprudence and the ability to apply the same to practice, en- 
abling him to cope with the ablest of opposmg counsel and in the 
majority of cases to gain verdicts for his clients. He is careful and 
methodical in the preparation of legal papers and their presentation 
to the court are very thorough in the matters of detail as well as in 
the general principles of his cases, while his ability as an advocate 
makes him a formidable, though at all times a fair and courteous 

Mr. Gilbert served from 1905 to 1907 as City Attorney of 
Mount Vernon and in 1 896 was the Republican nominee for Prose- 
cuting Attorney for Jefferson county, but failed of election on ac- 
count of the then normally strong Democratic majority. He is an 
active and influential politician, a trusted leader of the Republican 
party in his own and other Southern Illinois counties, besides enjoy- 
ing a wide acquaintance in political circles throughout the state. In 
addition to his general practice, he is attorney for various enterprises. 

420 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

among which are the Mount Vernon Car Manufacturing Company, 
the Third National Bank, of which is also a director, the Citizens 
Gas, Electric & Heating Company, and the Mount Vernon Loan 
& Building Association. He is also a director of I. G. Gee & Co. 
Bank at Waltonville, and sustains a similar relation to the banks 
of Woodlawn and Kell, his connection with these several interests 
indicating the confidence which the management repose in his abil- 
ity and judgment, besides being a compliment to his high standing as 
a faithful and honorable business man. In addition to his successes 
in his profession and in politics Mr. Gilbert is a capable and pros- 
perous business man. 

In the year 1906 Mr. Gilbert was appointed postmaster of 
Mount Vernon and has since conducted the office with his char- 
acteristic business ability, discharging the duties with credit to him- 
self and to the entire satisfaction of the public. Since taking charge 
of the office, he has made many changes and mtroduced a number 
of reforms and it is now conceded by all with any knowledge of 
postal affairs as well as by the department, to be one of the most 
methodical and best managed offices in the state. 

Mr. Gilbert was married m April, 1893, to Miss Catherine 
Harman, of Jefferson county, daughter of the late John Q. Har- 
man, a former prominent citizen of the county and the first Clerk of 
the Appellate Court at Mount Vernon, of which position he was 
the incumbent at the time of his death. Three children have been 
born to this union, namely : James Harman, Helen May and George 
Gale, Jr. In his fraternal relations Mr. Gilbert is a member of the 
Pythian Brotherhood, belonging to Jefferson Lodge, No. 121, and 
he is also an influential worker in Lodge No. 819, Benevolent and 
Protective Order of Elks. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CQ., ILL. 421 


Proprietor of the Bray Engineering Company of Mount Ver- 
non, and one of the leaders of industry in Southern IHinois, is an 
American by birth, but belongs to a distinguished English family, 
whose history is intimately interwoven with that of the land of his 
forefathers. Thomas D. Bray, the subject's father, was a sea- 
faring man, who spent many years in the English navy and in due 
time rose to a position of prominence in that branch of service. By 
a series of promotions he was gradually advanced until becoming 
commander of a vessel and for brave and gallant conduct was 
knighted under the name of Sir Thomas Dyer Bray, by which title 
he is still known in the naval circles of Great Britain. Captain 
Bray resigned his commission some time in the sixties and in 1866 
came to the United States, locating in Chicago, lUinois: where he 
remained about fourteen years, removing at the expiration of that 
time to Southern California, where he spent the remainder of his 
days, dying in 1896. 

Sir Joseph Lewis Bray, a brother of Thomas Dyer Bray, was 
also a distinguished officer in the British naval service, and at one 
time was Governor of the Island Malta, the largest and most im- 
portant naval stations in the world, the position being one of great 
responsibility and earning for those filling it especial honors as offi- 
cers of the crown. Sir William Bray, the subject's grandfather, 
also a seaman by profession, attained to high standing in the navy 
and at the time of his death, held the rank of Commodore. He was 
killed about the year 1869 in the life saving service and left to his 
descendants the memory of a useful life and an honorable name, the 
luster of which has never been tarnished by the commission of a 
single unworthy act. 

Fannie M. Browning, wife of Capt. Thomas D. Bray, and 

422 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

mother of the subject of this sketch, was a daughter of J. M. 
Browning, to whom belonged the unique distinction of having been 
the first white child born south of the Baltimore & Ohio South- 
western Railroad, then the Ohio & Mississippi Railroad. Mrs. 
Bray, who was one of three children born at the same time grew to 
maturity at Browning Hill, about five miles west of Benton, Frank- 
lin county, Illinois, but spent the greater part of her married life in 
Chicago and California, dying in the latter state a number of years 
ago. Captain and Fannie M. Bray were the parents of ten chil- 
dren, five of whom are living, as follows: Walter, of Bowlmg 
Green, Ohio; Harold L., of Chicago; Thomas D., also of that 
city; Mabel E., who lives in Los Angeles, California, and Harry 
F., the subject of this review. 

Harry F. Bray was born in Chicago in the year 1868 and 
spent the early years of his life in his native city, receiving a practical 
education in the public schools. Endowed with strong mental powers 
and a decided taste for mechanical pursuits he yielded to a natural 
desire when a mere youth by becoming an apprentice to a marine 
engineer, and after acquiring efficiency and skill as a workmen de- 
voted the ensuing sixteen years to the profession, the greater part 
of the time on deep water ships, plying the Pacific coast. Resign- 
ing his position in the marine service at the expiration of the period 
indicated, he spent the succeeding three years as a locomotive engi- 
neer, but in 1 902 severed his connections with the road and returned 
to Chicago, where during the five years ensuing he was engaged 
in the heating and plumbing business. 

Disposing of his interests in the above city Mr. Bray, in April, 
1907, purchased his present site in Mount Vernon and established 
what has since been known as the Bray Engineering Company, one 
of the leading industries of the place and an enterprise whose de- 
velopment and growth has fully realized his expectations, as the 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 423 

present wide reputation of the plant and the large and constantly 
increasing business abundantly attest. In connection with contract- 
ing for the erection of various types of engines, Mr. Bray commands 
a large and lucrative patronage in the lines of plumbing, heating, 
electrical work and sewage, in all of which his technical training 
and experience have made his services especially valuable. 

In the building up of the large industry of which he is the head 
and general manager, Mr. Bray has displayed executive ability of 
a high order and a technical knowledge of every branch of the 
business which shows him a master of his calling and endowed with 
capacity to inaugurate and carry forward large and important en- 
terprises. Blessed with a clear brain, analytical mind and sound 
judgm.ent, with the necessary tact to direct these and other attributes 
in the right direction, he has moved steadily forvvaid from one 
achievement to another, overcoming all obstacles calculated to hin- 
der or impede his progress and moulding circumstances to suit his 
purposes until he now occupies a commanding position in industrial 
circles with encouraging prospects of still greater success as the 
years go by. His career, characterized by consecutive effort and 
continuous advancement, has been eminently creditable, while the 
evidence of thorough preparation and the laudable ambition to be 
satisfied with nothing less than the highest attainment render his 
story of especial value to the young man who contemplates making 
mechanical pursuits his life work. 

Mr. Bray has traveled extensively and mingled much with 
men, thus adding very materially to his experience and affording the 
means of obtaining a valuable practical knowledge such as educa- 
tional institutions do not impart. He has sailed every sea and nearly 
all the great inland waters and visited all the most important parts 
of the world, besides visiting m.any places of historic interest on 
both continents and acquiring a knowledge of the manners and cus- 

424 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

toms of the people of the different countries traversed. His has in- 
deed been a varied and interesting experience and his relations with 
his fellow men under so many difficult circumstances enables him to 
take broad views of life and duty and gives him an influence and 
leadership which only the man of the world can exercise. 

"Much depends upon being well born," in which respect Mr. 
Bray has been fortunate and he has every reason to fee! proud of 
his birthright and to keep untarnished the escutcheon of the honor- 
able family to which he belongs. As stated in preceding para- 
graphs both his father and his grandfather were knighted for duty 
bravely and faithfully performed and the high positions to which 
they rose, in the service of their country were honorably won and 
worthily held. From those sturdy ancestors Mr. Bray has inherited 
not a few of the sterling characteristics that have made him an in- 
fluential factor in the business world and a leader among his fellow 
men, but he makes no undue display of these qualities nor obtrudes 
the history of his antecedents upon unappreciative ears. With all 
of his experience, training and success he is one of the most modest 
and companionable of men. Of a pleasing presence and attractive 
personality he is easily approachable, being a favorite in the social 
circle, popular with all classes and conditions of his fellow citizens 
and one of the strong and forceful factors of the city in which he 

The domestic life of Mr. Bray dates from the year 1892, 
when he was happily married to Miss Alice Ward, of Benton, Illi- 
nois, daughter of Thomas Ward, one of the early settlers of the 
city and a pioneer of Franklin county. The home of Mr. and Mrs. 
Bray has been made bright by the presence of one child, a daugh- 
ter by the name of Winifred Estella, whose birth occurred on the 
8th of October, 1893, and who is now an interesting young lady in 
her sixteenth year, a favorite with her companions and the pride of 
the family circle, of which she is such an important part. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 425 

Although well informed on the leading questions of the day 
and abreast of the times on all matters of public import, Mr. Bray 
is not a politician nor an office seeker, being essentially a business 
man and content with the simple title of citizen. Nevertheless he 
manifests an abiding interest in the material advancement of Mount 
Vernon and the social and moral progress of the people and to the 
extent of his ability is ever ready to encourage all laudable means 
for the common good. He is a Mason of high rank, including among 
other degrees, that of Sir Knight, and is also a member of the Pyth- 
ian Brotherhood and the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks. 


In the death of the honored subject of this memoir on the 2d 
day of October, 1 908, there passed from earth another member of 
the group of distinctively representative men who were instrumental ' 
in building up the material interests of Jefferson county and leaders 
in those things, which made for the social and intellectual advance- 
ment of their respective communities. His nan^e is familiar, not 
alone to the representative people of the county to whose develop- 
ment and progress he contributed so conspicuously but to all who 
are informed concerning the history of Southern Illinois. A pio- 
neer of this state and for many years one of the foremost men of 
the section of country honored by his citizenship, Capt. John Riley 
Moss impressed his individuality upon the times in which he lived and 
his long connection with the growth and prosperity of his native 
county will cause his name to be enshrined in the memories of his 
contemporaries as one of the distinguished citizens of his day and 

426 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

From the most reliable data obtainable the Moss family is sup- 
posed to be of Norse or Scandinavian origin, although its first rep- 
resentative in America came from England early in the colonial 
period, nnd settled at various points along the New England coast. 
The Captain's immediate ancestors migrated to the South a num- 
ber of years ago and were among the sterling yeomanry of North 
Carolina, his father. Ransom Moss, having been a native of that 
state and his mother, Anna (Johnson) Moss, of Louisa county, 
Virginia. Ransom Moss was twice married, his first wife, Susan 
Avant, who came to Illinois from Tennessee in 1818, with her hus- 
band and settled in what is now Shiloh township, Jefferson county, 
being the first women laid to rest in the old Shiloh cemetery, one 
of the first places in the county consecrated to the burial of the dead. 
Mr. Moss and wife were among the first settlers of the above town- 
ship and figured conspicuously in the early history of the commu- 
nity, which they helped to establish. Anna Johnson became the 
wife of Mr. Moss on his second marriage, the two wives bearing 
him nine children in all, the Captain being one of the youngest of 
the family and a small boy when his father died. 

Capt. John Riley Moss was born May 13, 1830. on the old 
home place in Shiloh township, Jefferson county, and, as already 
stated, was a mere child when his widowed mother assumed the re- 
sponsibility of the family by reason of his father's untimely death. 
Reared to agricultural pursuits and early obliged to contribute to 
the support of his mother he spent his youthful years in close touch 
with the soil and was enabled to obtain but a limited education in 
such indifferent schools as the country in those days afforded. On 
reaching the years of manhood he selected agriculture for his voca- 
tion and in due time became one of the leading farmers of his town- 
ship and perhaps the largest stock raiser of the county, being the 
first man to introduce Cotswold sheep, Jersey cattle and the Berk- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 427 

shire breed of hogs into this part of IHinois and leading the way to 
a general improvement in the matter of live stock among the farmers 
of the county. He was enterprising in all the term implies and as 
a farmer and stock raiser had few equals and no superiors, cultivat- 
ing the soil by the most approved methods and taking advanced 
grounds in arousing and maintaining an interest in progressive agri- 
culture. His financial success was commensurate with the energy, 
judgment and foresight displayed in his undertakings and in due 
itme he became not only one of the well-to-do farmers of the coun- 
ty, but also one of the leading men of affairs and public-spirited 
citizens. Consequently it naturally followed that he should be- 
come one of the promoters and organizers of the Jefferson County 
Agricultural Society, which for a number of years gave annual ex- 
hibitions of live stock and farm products and accomplished much 
for improvement along those lines. 

When the safety of the government was put in jeopardy by 
" armed forces of rebellion, Mr. Moss was among the first Jefferson 
county's patriotic sons to tender his services to the Union and not 
long after his enlistment in Company C, Sixtieth Regiment lUinois 
Volunteer Infantry, in 1861, he was at the front discharging his 
duty as became a gallant defender of the nation's honor and shar- 
ing the fortunes and dangers of war under many trying and hazard- 
ous circumstances. Immediately after the organization of Company 
C he was made its captain and as such served with an honorable 
record until discharged by reason of disability in 1863. On Sep- 
tember 5th of the following year he was appointed Deputy Pro- 
vost Marshal of the Eleventh District and not long after taking 
charge of his office was put in command of a detachment of troops 
and ordered to take a fort on Skillet Fork river, held by a number of 
disloyal men, and to capture all such who were in hiding or in other 
ways seeking to evade military service. This duty he discharged 

428 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

in such a manner as to make his name a terror to the disloyal ele- 
ment in his district and as Supervisor of the enrolling and drafting 
of soldiers throughout his jurisdiction, he also rendered valuable 
service to the state and earned an honorable place in the category 
of her brave and loyal sons. He became a member of Coleman 
Post, No. 508, Grand Army of the Republican, of Mount Vernon, 
upon its organization and was active for many years in its councils, 
serving as commander of the same. At the time of his demise the 
honorary pallbearers at his funeral were selected from among his 
old comrades. 

At the close of the war Captain Moss resumed the peaceful 
pursuits of civil life on his farm in Shiloh township and as stated 
in a preceding paragraph rose to conspicuous place among the lead- 
ing agriculturists and stock raisers of the county, becoming influen- 
tial in public affairs and taking a active part in the political issues 
of the times. His services to the Republican party made him one 
of its most influential leaders in the county of Jefferson, but when 
its policies were in his judgment unsatisfactory or failed to meet the 
demands of the people he did not hesitate to dissent therefrom and 
appeal to the bar of public opinion as was attested by his election in 
1 878 to the Thirty-first General Assembly as an independent candi- 
date. His career in that body met the expectations of his friends of 
all parties throughout the county and proved eminently satisfactory 
to his constituency as well as creditable to himself. He served on a 
number of important committees where his judgment, knowledge 
and wide grasp of public questions were duly recognized and ap- 
preciated and in the general deliberations of the chamber he proved 
a ready and able debater and his opinions always commanded the 
respect of his fellow members. 

Captain Moss always manifested a deep and abiding interest 
in the early history of his state and county, especially the latter. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 429 

and was one of the best informed men on the pioneer period in his 
part of the country. At the time of his death and for many years 
previous he was an active member of the IHinois State Historical 
Society. In recognition of his researches and other services he was 
made president of the Pioneers' Association of Jefferson county, in 
which capacity he was instrumental in arousing an interest in local 
history which is still maintained and by means of which much valu- 
able information has been collected and placed on record. He also 
gathered much important data on the early history of Shiloh town- 
ship and put it in form for future references, besides taking a lead- 
ing part in promoting the intellectual advancement of the commu- 
nity by means of social and literary clubs, which under his judicious 
management resulted in considerable enthusiasm and became edu- 
cational factors of wide influence. One of the most important of 
these societies was a debating club in which the leading citizens of 
the township were active participants and through which much was 
accomplished in developing the art of public discourse and preparing 
not a few young men for lives of honor and usefulness. Later the 
organization partook more of the character of a literary society and 
among its members were a number of men who have smce made 
their mark in the world, to say nothing of the good work done in 
cultivating a taste for literature among the people of the commu- 
nity, in general. Under the leadership of Captain Moss, Shiloh 
easily took the lead of her sister townships in literary culture and 
her citizens have ever since sustained a creditable reputation for 
general information and a high order of intelligence. In addition 
to his activity and influence in organizing and maintaining for a num- 
ber of years the various societies referred to, the captain was also 
president of the Southern Illinois Fox Hunting Association and al- 
ways took delight in this means of recreation. He was a true sports- 
man and a liberal patron of all legitimate means for promoting an 

430 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

interest in outdoor amusements and to him more than to any other 
member was the above association indebted for its popularity, dur- 
ing the period of its existence. In his rehgious behef Captain Moss 
subscribed to the Methodist creed and for many years was an active 
and influential member of the church, having figured prominently 
in establishing a number of organizations in his own and other coun- 
ties and risen to a position of considerable prominence in ecclesias- 
tical circles. In all of his relations his conduct was that of an earnest 
and sincere disciple whose daily life was consistent with his religious 
profession and who ever tried to realize in himself his high ideals 
of Christian manhood and citizenship. The Captain was essen- 
tially a man of the people with the best interests of his fellows at 
heart and there were few in his county who were as universally re- 
spected or stood as high as he in the confidence and esteem of the 

Permelia C. Allen, who became the wife of Captain Moss, 
was born in Jefferson county, Illinois, November 23, 1835. Her 
father, a native of Tennessee, and a prominent farmer and local 
minister of the Methodist Episcopal church, was one of the leading 
citizens of the county and for many years an influential factor in 
public affairs. Her mother, who maiden name was Eliza Daniel, 
came to Illinois from her native state of Kentucky and spent the 
greater part of her life in the county of Jefferson. Mrs. Moss was 
a woman of many excellent traits of character, a devoted Christian 
and like her husband, an active worker in the local Methodist Epis- 
copal church to which she belonged. She departed this life in 
Mount Vernon at the home of her daughter, Mrs. Rufus Grant, 
on the 1 6th day of March, 1 908, and left to mourn her loss a large 
circle of devoted relatives and admiring friends. 

The following are the names of the children born to Captain 
and Mrs. Moss: Angus I., a farmer of Shiloh township; Hon, 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 431 

Norman H. Moss, a leading member of the Jefferson County Bar, 
whose sketch appears elsewhere in these pages; Mrs. E. W. Neal, 
of Knoxville, Tennessee; Dr. Harry C. Moss, of Albion, Illinois; 
Mrs. Rufus Grant, of Mount Vernon, and Mrs. Addie May Mc- 
Anally, deceased, Brst wife of Dr. John T. McAnally, of Car- 
bondale, Illinois. The death of Captain Moss, on the date men- 
tioned in the beginning of this review, occurred at the home of his 
son. Dr. Harry Moss, of Albion, and caused universal sorrow 
among his many friends and fellow citizens, especially those with 
whom he was brought into intimate relations and who had learned 
to appreciate his splendid powers and prize his many estimable qual- 
ities. His was indeed a life fraught with great good to the world 
and among his fellow citizens of Jefferson county his name will long 
be honored as one of the leading men of the time in which he lived 
and wrought. 


Holding distinctive precedence as a captain of industry, the 
subject of this sketch fills a large place in the manufacturing and 
business circles of his own and other states and as executive head 
of one of the largest and most important industrial enterprises in 
Southern Illinois, has earned a reputation second to that of none of 
his compeers. Beginning life under many unfavorable circum- 
stances and early obliged to rely entirely upon his own resources, 
his career has indeed, been truly remarkable and to him in the true 
sense of the term belongs the proud title of a "self-made man. 

W. C. Arthurs, president of the Mount Vernon Car Manufac- 
turing Company, and one of the leading citizens of his city and state, 
springs from sturdy Scotch ancestors who in their native land went 

432 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

by the name of MacArthurs, but during a long period of residence 
in the United States the descendants of the original immigrant to 
this county have gradually dropped the prefix, leaving the patrony- 
mic as it now appears. 

Joseph W. Arthurs, the subject's grandfather, was a native of 
North Carolina, where his birth occurred m 1806. He left that 
state in an early day and migrated to lUjnois, settling at Hillsboro, 
Montgomery county, where he worked for some time at the tailor's 
trade, dying there in the year 1849. Joseph W. Arthurs married 
Lydia Morrison, November 26, 1835, who was born in Iredell 
county. North Carolina, April 9, 1810, and died at Camden, South 
Carolina, on the 13th of March, 1844. Her father, James 
Morrison, also a native of North Carolina, was born in the county 
of Iredell, November 30, 1 769, and her mother, who bore the 
maiden name of Margaret Grace V/ilson, was born in the same state 
and county on January 1 7th of the year 1 779. 

Among the children of Joseph W. Arthurs and wife was a son 
by the name of James M. Arthurs, who was born in Hillsboro, 
Illinois, and who in early life learned the trade of blacksmithing 
which he followed for many years in his native town. He entered 
the army at the breaking out of the Civil war and served till the 
downfall of the Confederacy, participating in a number of bloody 
battles and earning an especially honorable record as a brave and 
gallant soldier. He was a member of the Ninth Illinois Infantry, 
Colonel Phillips' regiment, and for meritorious conduct was pro- 
moted second lieutenant of Company H, which office he held when 
discharged at the close of the war. Some time in the nineties he 
moved to Kansas and departed this life at Hutchinson, that state, 
in the year 1903. 

Emma Cram, wife of James M. Arthurs, was born near Hills- 
boro, Illinois, February 1 0, 1 842, and from the most reliable data 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 433 

obtainable, appears to have been a descendant of the celebrated Von 
Cram family of Germany. She was a woman of many sterling 
qualities greatly esteemed by all who knew her, and her death, 
which occurred on October 1, 1865, was felt as a personal loss 
in the community where she spent the greater part of her life. Lati- 
nus M. Cram, father of Mrs. Arthurs, was born at Portland, Maine, 
October 30, 1810. He married at Norfolk, Virginia, A.ugust 13, 
1836, Ann Hart, whose birth occurred in Suffolk county on Long 
Island, New York, July 19, 1811, and who belonged to one of the 
old and well known families of that part of the Empire state. When 
a mere lad Latimus Cram was bound as a cabin boy on a vessel 
plying the Atlantic and ever afterwards followed the sea. gradually 
rising from his original humble station to become master of a ship, a 
position he held for many years. He was drowned in the Ohio 
river, near Cairo, Illinois, April 9, 1 842. His widow survived him 
many years, dying at Hillsboro, December 27, 1893. 

The Harts were among the early residents of Suffolk county. 
Long Island, Philetus Hart, father of Ann Hart, having been born 
there on the 6th day of May, 1 768. His wife, Mary Hart, also a 
native of the same county, was born September 7.1, 1 778, and died 
in the city of New York in February, 1 83 1 , her husband departing 
this life in September of the previous year, 1830. 

^ . C. Arthurs, whose name introduces this sketch, is a native 
of Montgomery county, Illinois, and the son of James M. and 
Emma (Cram) Arthurs. He was born at Hillsboro, received his 
education in the schools of that city and Litchfield and while still 
a mere boy began making his own way in the world by working 
on a farm. Indeed, so small was he at the time of finding his first 
employment, that he could barely hold the handles of a plow, but 
blessed with good health and a strong body, and endowed with an 

unusual amount of energy for one so young he persevered in his 


434 wall's history of jefferson cc, ill. 

labors and not only earned the small wages received, but so pleased 
his employer that the latter parted with his services very reluctantly 
when the lad saw fit to change his mode of life. From the fields he 
entered a grocery store where he clerked for some time and obtained 
a practical knowledge of business and subsequently accepted a sim- 
ilar position in a drug store. After an experience of a few years 
in the latter capacity he entered the shoe business and sold shoes at 
retail for a number of years, leaving the retail shoe business to en- 
gage as traveling salesman with a boot and shoe firm whose interests 
he represented on the road for a number of years. Meanwhile he 
prepared himself for a business life by taking a course in a commer- 
cial college at Jacksonville and on being graduated from that in- 
stitution was well fitted to grapple with the problems which usually 
confront the ambitious young man at the beginning of his career. 

Early in life Mr. Arthurs resolved to make his employer's in- 
terests his own, and prove faithful to every trust reposed in him. 
By always acting in conformity with this resolution he was enabled 
to hold a number of important positions and it is a fact worthy of 
note that he was never discharged by an employer, nor in any way 
lost the confidence or incurred the ill-will of those to whose service 
he devoted so much of his time and energy. 

On quitting the road, Mr. Arthurs in partnership with certain 
friends built a shoe factory at De Kalb, Illinois, but by reason of 
the failure of his associates the enterprise did not prove a success 
and had to be abandoned, following which he entered, in 1887, 
the employ of the Litchfield Car & Machine Company as cashier 
and paymaster, which important position he held during the two 
years ensuing. Severing his connection with the above enterprise at 
the expiration of the time indicated Mr. Arthurs in 1890 accepted 
the post of secretary and treasurer of the Mount Vernon Car Manu- 
facturing Company, and after discharging the duties of the same in 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 435 

a highly creditable manner for a period of seven years he was made 
receiver, which place he filled to the satisfaction of all concerned 
from 1897 to 1902 inclusive, bringing the concern out of bank- 
ruptcy, paying its debts, greatly improving the property and turning 
same back to the original stockholders without a sale of the property. 
In the latter year he was further honored by being elected vice- 
president and treasurer of the enterprise and after six years of faith- 
ful and acceptable service in that capacity, he succeeded in 1908, 
on the death of Mr. Settlemire to the presidency, which responsible 
and honorable office he still holds and in which he has displayed 
sound judgment, a comprehensive grasp of the principles essential to 
success and executive ability of a very high order. 

The Mount Vernon Car Manufacturing Company was organ- 
ized in 1890 since which time it has grown into one of the largest 
and most successful industrial enterprises of Southern Illinois, ad- 
vancing from the original capacity of ten cars and one hundred car 
wheels per day, to the present daily output of twenty-five cars, or 
four hundred and fifty wheels, and affording employment to con- 
siderably over one thousand mechanics and skilled artisans, many 
of whom have been with the company ever since it was established. 
The pay roll of this large and rapidly growing industry averages 
something in excess of sixty thousand dollars per month, and the 
average yearly product is five million dollars. Since beginning busi- 
ness a little more than eighteen years ago the company has paid for 
labor alone, the enormous sum of four million dollars, besides large 
amounts for material and all of which has been spent in Mount Ver- 
non, proving a great impetus to the business interests of the city, and 
adding very materially to its reputation as an important industrial 
and business center. 

Mr. Arthurs is a business man in the broadest meaning of the 
term and to him more perhaps than to any other is due the contin- 

436 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

uous growth of the company since he became president and its 
present high standmg in manufacturmg circles throughout the coun- 
try. Wide-awake, enterprising and remarkably energetic, his in- 
fluence is felt in every department of the business which he manages 
and being familiar with its every detail, he understands well how to 
obtain the largest possible results, at the same time maintaining those 
mutually pleasant relations with his subordinates which have made 
them his loyal friends and for which the establishment has long been 
noted. Aside from his official position with the Mount Vernon Car 
Manufacturing Company, Mr. Arthurs is identified with a number 
of other enterprises in this city and elsewhere, being a director of 
the Mechanics-American National Bank, of St. Louis, one of the 
largest institutions of the kind in that city, a director of the Third 
National Bank, of Mount Vernon, and of the bank of Waltonville, 
besides owning stock in thirty-six other companies and corporations, 
and sustaining the relation of director in a number of them, in all of 
which he manifests a lively interest and keeps in close touch with 
their growth and success. 

Although deeply immersed in business matters, Mr. Arthurs is 
identified with and a friend to all enterprises which tend to advance 
the material growth of his city and county or in any way benefit the 
people. He is a Republican, but not a politician, although well 
grounded in the principles of his party, thoroughly informed rela- 
tive to the great questions and issues before the public. He has the 
courage of his convictions upon all matters of local and general in- 
terest and is a splendid type of the intelligent American citizen who 
loves his country and makes every other consideration subordinate 
to its welfare. 

In religion he is liberal in all the term implies, belonging to no 
church or fraternal organization, but according to everybody the 
same right of private judgment which he claims for himself. He is 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 437 

a friend of the church, however, and believes Christianity to be the 
greatest and most influential factor in modern civilization. He also 
does considerable charitable and benevolent work, and is ever ready 
to assist any laudable means for the comfort and welfare of those 
whom fortune has neglected and to contribute liberally to the var- 
ious humanitarian institutions which have done so much for the poor 
and indigent of the community. 

Mr. Arthurs is a man of strong domestic tastes and the beauti- 
ful and luxurious home on North street is one of the finest and most 
attractive in the city. It is the one happy place where he can divert 
himself of the cares and distractions of business and enjoy the quiet 
atmosphere of a circle which approaches very near the ideal. The 
presiding spirit in this hospitable household is a lady of intelligent, 
varied culture and gracious presence to whom he was united in the 
bonds of wedlock on November 28, 1 888, and who previous to 
that time bore the name of lola E. Settlemire. Mrs. Arthurs was 
born at Gillespie, Illinois, and is the daughter of D. O. Settlemire, 
formerly a prominent resident and manufacturer of Litchfield and 
fbr a number of years president of the Litchfield Car & Machine 
Company, of that city. Mr. and Mrs. Arthurs have one child, 
David Clifford Arthurs, who was born March 8, 1907. 

In closing the review of one of the leading captains of industry 
of Illinois it is only necessary to state that he is a gentleman of pro- 
gressive ideas and generous impulses, highly esteemed by his fellow 
men, and filling a place in the public view which has brought him 
prominently to the front, not only in business circles but in the do- 
main of citizenship as well. Of fine personal presence and com- 
manding influence he moves among his fellows as one born to leader- 
ship, nevertheless he is kind and affable, easily approachable, and 
all who enjoy the favor of his acquaintance and friendship speak in 
the highest terms of his many sterling qualities of mind and heart. 

438 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 



The substantial character of Mount Vernon is the result of the 
energy and integrity of her business men who as a class compare 
favorably with those of any other city of like importance. The 
growth of the town has been along lines that make for permanency 
and for this reason people with means are willing to make invest- 
ments without fear or hesitancy regarding future values. The sub- 
ject of this review has done his part in building up the splendid repu- 
tations of the city, and holds a high place in the esteem of its lead- 
ing business men of the city. 

Robert N. Hinman was born in Mount Vernon on the 18th 
day of December, 1 854. His father, Harmon D. Hinman, a native 
of Vermont, came to Illinois when quite a young man and settled at 
Shawneetown. He was a brick mason by trade and after many 
years spent at Shawneetown, he came to Mount Vernon, where he 
was prosperous and happy. The misfortune of a violent death, 
however, awaited him, for he was killed by a horse in 1 860, when 
our subject was but five years old. His wife, Betty (Moss) Hin- 
man, whose parents were natives of Virginia, died in 1 872, at the 
age of thirty-nine years. She was the mother of five children, the 
first three of whom, John, Rosa and Alice, are deceased. Our sub- 
ject was the fourth in order of birth, and the fifth. Alma, is the wife 
of J. C. Mass, and has her home in New Mexico. 

Mr. Hinman has always lived at Mount Vernon, where he 
attended both the public and the high school. At the age of fif- 
teen, he began work in the post-office, and continued there from 
1 870 to 1 887, being the assistant postmaster for the first nine years, 
at the expiration of which he became postmaster, and continued in 
that capacity for the next eight years. In December, 1887, he went 
into the hardware busineses with H. H. Simmons. This partner- 
ship continued for three years when Mr. Simmons retired from the 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 439 

business. For the next two years Mr. Hinman operated the store 
himself, and at the expiration of this time the management was re- 
organized by the accession of two additional members to the firm, 
viz., R. P. Moyer andj. H. Irvin, under the name of Hinman, 
Irvin and Moyer. This association continued for one and one-half 
years, being broken by the death of Mr. Irvin in 1895. Mr. Hin- 
man and Mr. Moyer contmued in partnership for three and one- 
half years. On September 24, 1895, the present firm was organ- 
ized through the accession of J. J. Matthews, under the name of 
Hinman and Matthews. Their store is one of the best stocked and 
economically managed of any in the city, and a large patronage is 
being enjoyed by the firm. 

On December 29, 1875, Mr. Hinman was married to Miss 
Ella E. Burghart, who was born in New York state. This marriage 
took place at Ashley, Illinois, whither her people had removed when 
Ella was quite young. She departed this life, April 1 8, 1 906. She 
became the mother of four children, Robert E., of St. Louis; Earl 
B. and Stella E. are at the parental home in Mount Vernon. The 
fourth, John H., has his home at Bisbee, Arizona. 

Mr. Hinman served as Supervisor of Mount Vernon township 
from 1 905 to 1 907 and managed the office with a great deal of tact 
and efficiency. In 1890, he served as Mayor of Mount Vernon, 
and was well received and supported by the people. He is a mem- 
ber of the Odd Fellows and the Masons, and although he is quiet 
and unassuming in his demeanor, yet he has done much to promote 
the best interests of the community at large. He and his family are 
members of the First Methodist church, and Mr. Hinman is one of 
the trustees. Although a Republican in politics, he espouses only 
those men and measures that fill, in his judgment, the highest needs 
of the city, and in this way he contributes to its welfare and pros- 

440 wall's history of jefferson co.. ill. 


One of the best known and public-spirited citizens of Jefferson 
county, Illinois, is Joel V. Baugh, editor of the Mount Vernon 
News, who was born in Mount Vernon, May 19, 1838, and who 
has spent much of his long and eminently useful life in his home 
community. He is the son of Downing Baugh, a native of Barren 
county, Kentucky, who removed to Kaskaskia, Randolph county, 
Illinois, in the early days, 1820. The father of the subject was a 
distinguished lawyer, who was born in Barren county, Kentucky, 
in i 798. He lived in Barren county a short time and then moved to 
Mount Vernon, Illinois, in 1821. He married Milly Pace. He 
was prominent in public affairs, and was postmaster of Mount Ver- 
non for many years. He was a home student and began the prac- 
tice of law when forty-seven years old, having studied law in his 
spare moments for some time. He was successful from the first and 
he was appointed Circuit Judge in 1854, winning a record as an 
honest and upright jurist. During the years 1840 and 1841 he was 
enrolling and engrossing clerk of the twelfth General Assembly. He 
was a Probate Justice in Jefferson county for a time. In 1857 he 
removed to McGregor, Iowa, where he was elected Judge of the 
City Court. Judge Baugh was one of those sterling pioneers who 
helped to form and mould the early sentiments of this country. His 
death, which was deeply lamented by all who knew him, occurred 
at McGregor, Iowa, in 1888, at the advanced age of ninety-one 
years. He and his good wife were the parents of eight children, 
four of whom are living in 1909, namely: Mrs. Mary E. Fly, of 
Mount Vernon; J. W. ; Joel V., our subject; Mrs. Harriet Thurs- 
ton, of Hot Springs, South Dakota. 

Our subject's mother died when he was small and he was 
reared by his step-mother, known in her maindenhood as Sophronia 


wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 441 

Davis, of Moore's Prairie, Jefferson county. She married Downing 
Baugh in 1 847 and her death occurred in 1 908, at the advanced 
age of ninety-seven years. 

Joel V. Baugh spent his early life in Mount Vernon, attend- 
ing the common schools. He early decided to devote his life to 
journalism, and accordingly entered the office of the Jeffersonian 
in 1 85 1 , and he has been continuously connected with the business 
since that time, making a great success and becoming one of the 
molders of public opinion. He has had occasion to learn the news- 
paper business in all its details. The first paper started in Mount 
Vernon was the Jeffersonian, owned by John S. Bogan. It was 
started in 1851. Mr. John A. V/all and Mr. Baugh were among 
his employes. The latter worked three years with Mr. Bogan. 

In 1862 Mr. Baugh and L. M. Amala, a native of the Sand- 
wich Islands, started the first paper published in the Rocky Moun- 
tains outside of Denver. This was called the Mining Life and was 
published at Central City, Colorado. Mr. Baugh was afterward 
one of the founders of the Sioux City (Iowa) Journal, in 1864. 
He did editorial work on many daily papers afterwards. In 1868 
he started the Fairfield (Illinois) Democrat, and successfully man- 
aged it for eight years. He then went to Evansville, where he did 
editorial work. He was always regarded as a very capable man, 
having a felicity of expression and being a painstaking editor. 

Mr. Baugh returned to Mount Vernon about sixteen years ago 
and assumed charge of the News, and later published the Demo- 
crat here, which was merged with the News in 1901. It is now 
published by the Mount Vernon News Company, incorporated, of 
which our subject is editor. 

The domestic life of Mr. Baugh began in 1866 at Marshall- 
town, Iowa, when he was united in marriage with Mary C. Swan- 
son, of that city. Two sons have blessed this union, Harry B., who 

442 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

is engaged in the restaurant business in Salt Lake City, Utah ; Ernest 
V. is superintendent of the dining car department of the Baltimore 
& Ohio Railroad, with headquarters in Baltimore. 

The subject's wife, who was a woman of many estimable 
traits, passed to her rest February 3, 1908. 

Mr. Baugh has taken considerable interest in politics, but the 
only office he ever held was that of Police Magistrate of Mount 
Vernon, which he resigned. He is a Mason in all three of its 
branches, the Blue Lodge, the Chapter and Commandery. He is 
a member of the Methodist church. He commands the unqualified 
respect of all who know him. 


President of the Winn Lumber Company, of Mount Vernon 
and Waltonville, and a business man of high standing and wide 
reputation, is a native of Arkansas, born in the town of Hillsboro 
in the year 1873. His father, Powhatan Winn, who was also born 
and reared in the same state, was a farmer by occupation and a man 
of sterling worth in the community where he resided. His mother 
bore the maiden name of Ada L. Oaks, was descended from an old 
Ohio family, representatives of which moved to Arkansas many 
years ago and have since been identified with various parts of the 
commonwealth. Powhatan Winn was a plain, industrious, law 
abiding citizen and belonged to that large and eminently respectable 
class of yeomanry who, in a quiet, unostentatious way, add stability 
to the body politic and promote the interests of their fellow men. 
He departed this life in 1898, his good wife preceded him to the 
silent land in 1 890, the loss of both being profoundly deplored by 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL, 443 

the neighbors and friends among whom they Hved and by whom 
they were greatly esteemed. 

The family of Powhatan and Ada Winn consisted of nine 
children, seven of whom are still living, namely: James R., the sub- 
ject of this review; Frank W., of Albuquerque, New Mexico; 
Byron A., of Mount Vernon, Illinois; Richard P., who lies at Pine 
Bluff, Arkansas; Owen O., Clyde M., and Flora, all three reside in 
Mount Vernon. Those deceased were Louis M., the third in order 
of birth, and Everett, who was the youngest of the family. The 
Winns have long been identified with various parts of the South, 
notably with the state of Mississippi, of which the subject's father, 
James R. Winn, was a native. He was a planter and early achieved 
considerable local prominence in the county of his residence which 
he served as Sheriff and in various other official capacities, besides 
taking an influential part in developing the mineral resources of the 
country and promoting its agricultural interests. In an early day 
when Arkansas was a new and comparatively undeveloped terri- 
tory he joined the tide of emigration thither and was among the 
first settlers and pioneer planters of what is now Union county. He 
made the journey to the new country under many difficulties and 
hardships, having been obliged to cut a way for many miles through 
a dense and at intervals, well-nigh impenetrable forest, into whose 
depths no white man had ever penetrated, besides encountering 
many swamps and swiftly rushing streams to cross which required 
much hard labor and not a few dangers. Shortly after his destina- 
tion was reached he became a leader in the settlement which he as- 
sisted to establish and in due time rose to a place of prominence in 
Union county, where he was elected Sheriff, besides holding other 
positions of honor and trust and becoming widely known among the 
leading Democratic politicians of the state. His influence locally 
and elsewhere was great and at one time he was earnestly solicited 

444 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

by the leading representatives of his party to accept the nomination 
for Governor, but refused the honor although well qualified to fill 
that or any other office within the gift of the people. This public- 
spirited man and eminently honorable and praise-worthy citizen died 
in the year 1884 and left to his posterity the memory of a useful 
life and an honorable name. The early life of James R. Winn, the 
subject of this sketch, was devoid of thrilling experience and con- 
tains little to attract the attention of the writer who seeks to interest 
his readers by a recital of the exciting or tragic. He spent his child- 
hood under the parental roof in the state of his birth, later accom- 
panied the family to Ohio and thence after a brief residence returned 
to Arkansas, where he received his education in the district schools 
and worked several years as manager of a saw mill for a St. Louis 
lumber firm. Subsequently he embarked in the manufacture of 
lumber upon his own responsibility and was thus engaged for two 
years, at the expiration of which time he organized the Winn Lum- 
ber Company at Mount Vernon, Illinois, with which he is still con- 
nected and of which he is now president and manager. 

The Winn Lumber Company is incorporated under the laws 
of Illinois and since its organization, in the year 1905. to the pres- 
ent time the business has steadily grown in magnitude until it now 
takes a wide range, the enterprise being liberally patronized not only 
in Mount Vernon but at Waltonville, where a branch office has been 
established with most encouraging results. In the management of 
this large and growing enterprise Mr. Winn displays ability of a 
high order and he possesses the faculty of foreseeing with remark- 
able accuracy the future outcome of his own well laid plans. Meth- 
odical as well as intensely practical he keeps in touch with every de- 
tail of the business and has it so well in hand that his plans seldom, 
if ever, miscarry, nor is his judgment ever at fault. 

Mr. Winn is essentially a business man and as such ranks 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL, 445 

among the most enterprising and successful of his compeers in Mount 
Vernon and Jefferson county. He has done much to promote the 
material prosperity of the city and give it an honorable reputation 
among the important business centers of Southern Illinois, and also 
manifests an abiding interest in other than his own affairs, being 
alive to all that tends to the general welfare of the community and 
the social and moral advancement of his fellow men. He is a stock- 
holder in the King City Fair Association, in addition to which he 
has assisted in inaugurating and carrying to successful issue other en- 
terprises of a local character and lends his influence and support to 
whatever makes for the progress and best interests of his city, coun- 
ty and state. Financially his success has been commensurate with 
the energy displayed in all of his undertakings and although some- 
what handicapped by a severe bodily injury, the result of an acci- 
dent by which he lost his left arm, he has moved steadily forward in 
the accomplishment of his purposes until as already indicated he now 
occupies a conspicuous place in the business world and is highly 
esteemed by the people of his adopted city. Like the majority of 
enterprising men he takes an interest in public affairs and has well 
denned opinions and the courage of his convictions in the leading 
questions of the times. He is a Democrat, but not an active poli- 
tician, nevertheless he is interested in the success of his party and its 
candidates and endeavors to discharge the duties of citizenship in 
the intelligent manner characteristic of the wide-awake American 
who makes love of country paramount to every other consideration. 
Mr. Winn is unmarried and belongs to no lodge or fraternal organ- 
ization, despite which he is an important factor in the social life of 
Mount Vernon and very popular among the many warm friends 
with whom he is accustomed to associate. Being in the broadest 
sense of the term a self-made man, he has reason to feel proud of 
the honorable position in the business world to which he has attained 

446 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

and in view of the fact that he is still in the prime of life his success 
in the past affords an assurance of its continuance in the future but 
in still larger measure. 


There is no calling, however humble, in which enterprise and 
industry, coupled with a well directed purpose, will not be product- 
ive of some measure of success, and in the medical profession the 
qualities mentioned are especially essential. Under certain circum- 
stances a physician lacking them may eke out an existence, but he 
who would be eminently successful must possess a definite aim and 
must persevere in the pursuit of his purpose, besides having the other 
necessary qualities of head and heart to render him popular with 
the public. These the subject of this sketch seems to possess, since 
he is recognized as one of the honored and influential citizens of Jef- 
ferson county, Illinois, where he has long maintained his home, en- 
joying a wide practice in his chosen field of endeavor and command- 
ing the respect and esteem of the most equivocal order. Doctor Aren- 
dale is a splendid illustration of what a man may develop into 
if he has the grit, industry and perseverance, although surrounded in 
early life by many obstacles and discouraging environment. 

Dr. D. H. Arendale, a well known physician of Mount Ver- 
non, Illinois, was born May 28, 1857, in Marion county, Tennes- 
see, one-half mile from the Alabama state line. His early school- 
ing was quite primitive, having been obtained in the log school- 
houses of those days, in which split logs were used for seats and 
other similar furnishings. His first effort to gain a livelihood was in 
carrying produce on horseback, often a distance of twelve miles, 
seeking a market for various kinds of farm products, and he al- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 447 

ways succeeded in getting good prices. He was always at work 
what time he was not in school, having left the log school-house 
when seventeen years old and desiring to become a doctor he entered 
Burritte College in Tennessee in 1874 and was accredited with be- 
ing the most industrious pupil in that school. At a meeting of the fac- 
ulty a few days before the close of the term it was agreed that Mr. 
Arendale was the best student in the school. In 1875 and 1876 
he attended Doran's Cove high school, where he studied so assid- 
uously that he seriously impared his nervous system, having never 
completely recovered from the effects of the over-work he did there. 
While here he mastered most of the higher branches of mathematics, 
such as geometry and trigonometry, and at the close of the school 
was designated by the president of Pikeville College as a suitable 
pupil to demonstrate mathematical work, which he did to the entire 
satisfaction of all. In 1877 he was tendered a professorship in the 
William and Emma Austin College at Stevenson, Alabama, and he 
also taught in the free schools of Alabama and Tennessee, giving 
entire satisfaction to both patron and pupil. When only eighteen 
years old he applied to the trustees of a country school, who in- 
formed him that it had always required a bearded man to teach their 
school, but our subject asked to be "tried out" which was done and 
he taught the school to the end of the term in a most gratifying man- 
ner, having among his pupils one boy who weighed over two hun- 
dred pounds whom he taught his letters. This was the Island 
Creek, south of Bridgeport, Alabama. 

In 1880 our subject raised a cotton crop, working early and 
late in order to get enough money together to defray expenses in a 
medical college. His close application to farm work in Jackson 
county, Alabama, further demonstrated his determination to suc- 
ceed, and, useless to say that his subsequent studying of medicine 
resulted in the acquisition of a carefully trained mind in this line. 

448 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

He was a private student under Doctor Westmoreland at Atlanta, 
Georgia, where he received most of his medical training and while 
there he was complimented by the professor of anatomy in the state 
medical school upon his profound information in minute anatomy. 
Doctor Arendale took a course of medicine at Nashville, Tennes- 
see. This was after he had tried to practice medicine at Elk Prairie, 
Jefferson county, Illinois, where he came in October, 1882. On 
the day after his arrival while passing the Quinn school-house just 
as the school closed for the day, noticing a very beautiful young 
girl among the pupils our subject inquired of Francis Cox, who was 
driving him, who the young lady was. Upon being told that she 
was Miss Louie Bodine, he replied, "That's my wife." In less 
than two months they were engaged and were married in the fol- 
lowing month of June, the young couple spending their honey-moon 
that summer at the subject's old home in Tennessee, and his bride 
accompanied him to Nashville, when school opened the following 
fall, where she assisted him with his school work and did her part 
in economizing. Toward the close of the term their money ran out 
and they had a hard time to live, having to borrow money of the 
instructors in the college to defray part of their expenses back to 
Illinois, having settled in Elk Prairie among their relations. Doc- 
tor Arendale fitted up an old building in which they started house- 
keeping. Although almost poverty stricken and in poor health, re- 
sulting in too close application to study, our subject was too self- 
reliant to ask for help and for the first two years of his married life 
he never knew one day where he would get something to eat for 
the following day, maintaining his office in his residence — an old 
stable. In 1 886 he was appointed postmaster at Elk Prairie and 
conditions took a better aspect. This was during Cleveland's ad- 
ministration. Doctor Arendale purchased an acre of ground and 
erected a three room house on it, using the front room as post-office 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 449 

and also keeping a few articles to sell, his stock of goods having 
been obtained by giving a fifty-dollar note with his mother-in-law 
for security. His stock consisted of very small quantities of such 
materials as were used by his neighbors, such as coal oil, which he 
first purchased in quantities of one gallon at a time, his first stock 
of tobacco consisting of one dollar and fifty-five cents' worth, and his 
stock of dry-goods was a half bolt of light shirting, five cent calico. 
But prosperity came and he soon afterwards purchased such articles 
in lots of one hundred dollars' worth and his practice having grown 
in the meantime, he was enabled in the course of two years by his 
practice, the profits in the store and his salary as postmaster to ac- 
cumulate the sum of two thousand dollars. 

Prosperity has attended the efforts of our subject since those 
days and he observed the larger opportunities that were to be found 
at the county seat. Mount Vernon, where he moved. 

Since locating in Mount Vernon he has practically retired 
from the active practice of his profession and has devoted his time 
and attention to real estate and the management of the Palace Hotel, 
the latter being one of the leading and most successful in the city, 
recently rebuilt and refurnished. Through hard work, economy 
and self-denial the doctor and his wife have accumulated a compe- 
tency, owning valuable property in Mount Vernon in addition to 
profitable investments in California. 


Upon the industrial activity of a city or community depends 
in a very large measure the prosperity of the people and the men 

recognized as leading citizens and directors of progress are those 


450 wall's history of jefferson cc, ill. 

who have in hand the management and control of large and import- 
ant enterprises. The gentleman whose name initiates this article and 
who holds the important position of superintendent of the Mount 
Vernon Car Manufacturing Company is entitled to distinction as 
one of the progressive business men of Jefferson county, having for 
several years been officially connected with the leading industrial 
enterprises of Southern Illinois and earned an honorable reputation 
among the captains of industry throughout the state. 

Frank Snyder is a native of New York and the only child of 
John and Elizabeth Schultz Snyder, both born in the Empire state, 
the father a farmer by occupation and dying when the subject was 
three years old, the mother being called to her final rest when her 
son was a mere babe. The subject was born on December 22, 
1 850, and being bereft of his parents at a tender age was early in life 
thrown upon his own resources. After the death of his father he 
was taken by his grandmother with whom he lived until his thirteenth 
year when he began earning his own livelihood by working on a 
farm to which kind of service he devoted the five years ensuing, 
meanwhile as opportunities permitted he attended the district schools 
of his native county and in due time made fair progress in the com- 
mon English branches, but the greater part of his education, how- 
ever, consists of the valuable practical knowledge obtained by con- 
tact with the world and his fellow men, and the close and intelligent 
observation which develops and strengthens the mind and enables it 
to grasp and solve the great problems which must ultimately be met 
by everyone obliged to carve out his own destiny. At the age of 
eighteen young Snyder began working at carpentry and soon be- 
came not only an efficient but a skillful mechanic whose services 
accordingly were much in demand. He followed this trade for a 
number of years, principally at or near his native place, but in 1872 
he went to St. Louis and entered the employ of the Missouri Car 
and Foundry Company of that city, accepting a position in the car- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 451 

pentry department at a daily wage. His services proved eminently 
satisfactory to his superiors as his advancement from time to time 
attests and in 1878 he was assigned the important and responsible 
duty of superintending the erection of new cars and additional shops, 
which task he performed in due time very creditaby to the company. 

Mr. Snyder continued with the above firm until 1882, when he 
accepted a similar position at St. Charles, Missouri, where he re- 
mained four years. Severing his connection with his employers at 
the latter place in 1886 he became assistant superintendent of the 
Litchfield Car & Machine Company, Litchfield, Illinois, and so ably 
and faithfully did he discharge the duties of the place that he was 
subsequently, 1 887, appointed by the president, superintendent of the 
works, a position of great responsibility which he worthily filled dur- 
ing the following three years. When the Mount Vernon Car and 
Manufacturing Company was established Mr. Snyder resigned his 
position at Litchfield to accept the general superintendency of the 
new concern, a place he still holds and in which he has displayed a 
technical knowledge of every detail of the plant, contributing greatly 
to the continuous growth of the business and doing more than any 
other man connected with the enterprise to place it upon its present 
solid basis and give it an honorable reputation for which it is now 

Mr. Snyder has spared no reasonable effort to promote the in- 
terests of the large and growing establishment with which he is identi- 
fied, making every other consideration subordinate to this one object 
and as indicated above all connected with the concern concede that 
much of its phenomenal success is directly attributable to his energy, 
foresight and systematic methods of management and they look to 
him to lead the enterprise to still greater achievements. 

As may be readily inferred from the foregoing brief account 
of his rise from an humble and obscure position to the high and re- 
sponsible place he now occupies in industrial circles, Mr. Snyder is 

452 wall's history of jefferson co„ ill. 

a man of remarkable ability and superior judgment, whose enter- 
prising spirit no difficulties can daunt or discourage. With a tenacity 
of purpose as rare as it is admirable he seems to possess the faculty 
of moulding circumstances to suit his ends and of forseeing with re- 
markable accuracy the future outcome of present action. These with 
other equally strong and well defined characteristics peculiarly fit 
him for leadership in great and important undertakings and enable 
him to obtain the largest possible results where many men would fail. 
His success in surmounting difficulties and reaching his present in- 
flueritial position in the industrial world as well as a prominent place 
in the community affords a slight idea of the business capacity and 
untiring energy of one who since early youth has been obliged to 
rely entirely upon his own efforts while making his way through life 
and achieving a standing among his fellows such as few attain. In 
the broadest and most liberal sense of the term he is a self-made man 
and as such ranks with the most enterprising and successful of his 
compeers, discharging every obligation as becomes a true citizen and 
showing himself worthy of the confidence reposed in his integrity 
and honor by those with whom his lot has been cast. 

Mr. Snyder is a Republican in politics and takes an active in- 
terest not only in party questions but in public affairs as well. He is 
a friend of education and has been president of the township School 
Board for a period of four years, during which time he was largely 
instrumental in bringing about the erection of the handsome new 
building recently completed and now considered one of the finest. 
He has achieved a standing among his fellows such as few attain. In 
matters religious he is a regular attendant of the Presbyterian church 
of Mount Vernon and one of the most liberal contributors to its sup- 
port. Mr. Snyder is a Mason of high degree and an influential 
worker in the Blue Lodge, Chapter and Commandery, holding at 
this time the position of eminent commander of Patton Commandery 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 453 

69. He is also identified with the Order of Ben Hur, Knights of 
Honor and Knights and Ladies of Security, and the Benevolent 
and Protective Order of Elks, in addition to which organizations 
he keeps in touch with various private charities and is ever ready to 
respond to the call of sickness, poverty and distress. Socially he is 
esteemed by a large circle of friends and admirers and his popularity 
with all classes and conditions of people is limited only by the range 
of his acquaintance. 

Mr. Snyder is a married man and the head of a household 
that is well known in the best society circles of Mount Vernon. The 
lady who now bears his name and presides over his home was for- 
merly Miss Sarah E. Rites, of Springfield, Illinois, but at the time 
of her marriage, in the year 1 872, a resident of St. Louis, Missouri. 
Mr. and Mrs. Snyder have no children of their own, but some years 
ago the latter's niece became an inmate of their home and on her 
they have lavished the same wealth of love and affection they would 
have shown one of their own flesh and blood. They took the child 
when quite young and have reared her with great tenderness and 
care, sparing neither pains nor expense in providing for her education 
and fitting her for the refined circles in which she is destined ulti- 
mately to move. The young lady possesses remarkable musical tal- 
ent and is now in Leipsic, Germany, prosecuting her musical studies 
under the direction of some of the great masters of that and other 
European cities. 


The Grand Army button marks Mr. Pettit as a patriot of the 
first rank and his social and religious relations are in perfect harmony 
with what is highest and best in his daily intercourse with his fellow 

454 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

Jasper N. Pettit was born in Crawford county, Pennsylvania., 
April 22, 1844, was the son of Windsor and Eliza (Burger) Pet- 
tit, the former being a native of Pennsylvania, and the latter of 
New York and of German descent. 

After their marriage in Pennsylvania the parents of Mr. Pettit 
removed to Starke county, Illinois, later to Iowa, and from there to 
Jefferson county, Illinois, in 1865. He followed farming, but sold 
his farm a few years before his death and came to Mount Vernon, 
where he lived in retirement until his death, at the age of seventy 
years. He was an ardent Republican and both he and his com- 
panion were devout members of the Methodist church. Mrs. Bur- 
ger, mother of Mrs. Pettit, came to Illinois also, and ended her days 
here, living to an advanced age. Her husband died in the East a 
number of years previous. 

Mr. Pettit received his education in the district schools of Iowa 
and Illinois and remained under the parental roof until 1862, at 
which time he enlisted in Company I, Twenty-seventh Iowa Vol- 
unteer Infantry. This was the beginning of a long and trying expe- 
rience, the details of which were such as were common to the brave 
boys who have preserved for us our precious heritage of "liberty 
and union, one and inseparable." His first battle was at Red River, 
Arkansas, followed by such conflicts as those at Nashville, Mobile 
Bay, and the various other campaings and battles in which his regi- 
ment took part. His term of service lacked eight days of being three 
years in length, and he was mustered out at Clinton, Iowa, in Au- 
gust, 1865. Mr. Pettit's brother, George D., enlisted in the Ninth 
Iowa Cavalry, and served also for three years. 

After returning from the war Mr. Pettit came to Jefferson 
county, Illinois, and took up his residence on the farm he now occu- 
pies. This farm is made up largely of rich bottom land, and em- 
braces eighty-three acres. Mr. Pettit has spared no pains or effort 


in bringing the farm up to the best in the neighborhood. He has put 
up modem buildings, and has five hundred trees, mostly apple. He 
has given considerable attention also to stock raising, his horses and 
mules bringing most excellent prices in the market, while his Jersey 
Red hogs are constantly m demand by breeders and stock buyers. 

On February 1 4, 1 869, Mr. Pettit was married to Miss Eliza 
C. Johnson, a native of Jefferson county, and daughter of Thomas 
C. and Sarah J. (Frost) Johnson, both of whom were born in Ten- 

Mrs. Pettit's grandfather was a physician and practiced medi- 
cine in this country in early days. Her parents were members of the 
Methodist Episcopal church. South, and both lived to exceed the 
age of sixty years. 

Mr. and Mrs. Pettit have become the parents of three chil- 
dren. Mary was born in 1872 and is the wife of Robert Moss, a 
farmer m Jefferson county, and the mother of two children ; Charles 
A. was born in 1874, is married and has two children; Thomas W. 
was born in 1877, and died at the age of seven and one-half years. 
Mr. and Mrs. Pettit are congenial neighors and active workers in 
the Methodist church, in which Mr. Pettit has been steward and 
trustee for over thirty years. He has served many terms as super- 
intendent of the Sunday school and both he and his wife are active 
teachers in the work at the present time. 


The subject of this sketch has made proper use of his oppor- 
tunities and he has prospered in his business from year to year, con- 
ducting all his affairs successfully and carefully, displaying in all 

456 wall's history of jefferson cc, ill. 

his actions an aptitude for careful and correct management. He has 
not let the accumulation of a competency affect in any way his act- 
ions toward those less fortunate and he always has a cheerful word 
for those with whom he comes in contact and he occupies a notable 
position among the influential citizens of Jefferson county, both in a 
business and social way. 

E. W. Peters, the well known secretary and general manager 
of the Jefferson County Lumber Company, was born in the northern 
part of Germany, March 25, 1862, the son of John Peters, also a 
native of Germany. John Peters and his son, our subject, came to 
America in 1 866, settling in Baltimore, Maryland, where they lived 
one year. From that city they came to Bunker Hill, Illinois, where 
the subject's father lived until his death, April 13, 1908. He was 
a shoemaker by trade and a most accomplished workman. The 
mother of the subject was known in her maidenhood as Antje Park, 
who was also a native of Germany. She still lives at the old home- 
stead at Bunker Hill. Mr. and Mrs. John Peters were the parents 
of nine children, six of whom are living in 1909, namely: E. W., 
our subject; Anna Noel, of Bunker Hill, Illinois; John, also of 
Bunker Hill; Mrs. Frances Best, also living at Bunker Hill; 
Charles, of Bunker Hill; Edward, of Nokomis, Illinois. 

Mr. Peters received his schooling and early educational train- 
ing at Bunker Hill. Having a business bent he early decided^ to 
enter the lumber world, and accordingly in 1901 he became asso- 
ciated with the Jefferson County Lumber Company as secretary and 
manager. He had lived at Pana, Illinois, for a period of thirteen 
years prior to coming to Mount Vernon, where he was employed in 
the capacity of yard manager of a lumber company. The firm with 
which he is at present connected is one of the largest in this locality 
and it does a thriving business. Mr. Peters has mastered this line 
of business and the customers of this company know that they will 
receive courteous treatment and get a square deal here. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 457 

Mr. Peters was united in marriage in May, 1902, to Mrs. 
Pearl (DeGroot) Wiggs, who was born and reared in Illinois. She 
is the representative of a fine old Southern family of considerable 
influence in their community. 

The beautiful home of the subject and wife has been blessed 
by the birth of three children, namely: William, Anna and Frances. 
One boy, Frederick, the son of Mrs. Peters by her former husband, 
lives with our subject. 

Mr. Peters is a public-spirited man, always interested in the 
development of his community, and while living at Pana, he ably 
serVed as Alderman for two years. He belongs to the Knights of 
Pythias, the Modern Woodmen and the Methodist church. In his 
political relations he supports the Republican party. 

The Jefferson County Lumber Company is a corporation and 
as already intimated is one of the substantial and most important in- 
dustries of the county, and it is steadily and rapidly growing in scope 
and importance, doing an extensive business with remote localities 
and much of its recent prosperity is unquestionably due to Mr. Pet- 
ers' excellent management. Our subject is a fine fellow to know, 
pleasant, a big, hearty fellow of fine physical appearance, a man of 
sound judgment, prudent habits and frugal industry; and all who 
have formed his acquaintance since coming to Mount Vernon are his 


The progenitor of the family of this name, so long identified 
with mercantile interests in Jefferson county, was a native of Ger- 
many, who came to Pennsylvania when a young man. He settled 

458 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

near Kittanning, Armstrong county, and reared a family. Among 
his children was Joseph S. Brumbaugh, whose birth occurred on 
the Pennsylvania homestead. After growing up he became a mer- 
chant, removed to Illinois in 1857 and located at Middleton, 
Wayne county, where he was engaged in business for many years. 
In 1 872, he transferred his scene of operations to Dahlgren, Ham- 
ilton county, where he resumed and prosecuted the mercantile busi- 
ness until his death in April, 1884. The manner in which he met 
his wife involved something of a romance. When still a young man, 
he had gone to California and thence to Australia in search of gold. 
In the latter country he met Bridget Maria Fox, who was born in 
Ireland, but went to Australia with relatives in her young girlhood. 
After his marriage to this lady at Sidney, Mr. Brumbaugh remained 
in that country four or five years, during which time he made two 
fortunes. He returned to America in 1 856, visiting his wife's fam- 
ily in Ireland, en route, and when he reached the United States, lo- 
cated at Kittanning, Pennsylvania. Subsequent to this he went 
through his experiences in Illinois, as described above. By his mar- 
riage with Bridget Fox he had six children : Beechworth ; Doretta, 
wife of Nathan Sturman, deceased; Sidney, deceased; Lizzie J., 
wife of S. N. Hollowell, of Dahlgren. Illinois; Ida M., wife of W. 
B. Hollowell, of St. Louis; John P., of Mount Vernon. 

Beechworth Brumbaugh, eldest of this family, was born near 
Kittanning, Pennsylvania, January 5, 1857. He spent his early 
life in Dahlgren, Illinois, attending the public schools and later en- 
tering Hamilton College at McLeansboro, where he remained dur- 
ing two terms. During the intervals of school he had helped his 
father in the store and thus acquired an elementary acquaintance 
with the mercantile business. In 1875 he embarked in business for 
himself at Middleton, but two years later removed to Dahlgren 
and went into partnership with his father. After five years in this 

1 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 459 

connection, he resumed business on his own account in the same city 
and continued this until 1 888, when he removed to Mount Vernon. 
After eight years here, he was engaged in the commission business in 
New York City for seven years, but in 1 903 returned to Mount Ver- 
non and resumed business at the old stand, which he has given con- 
siderable celebrity under the name of the "Bee Hive." He is one 
of the prosperous merchants of the place and regarded as a man 
of excellent judgment, both as a buyer and seller. 

In 1882, Mr. Brumbaugh married Anna D. Friel. of Mc- 
Leansboro, by whom he had three sons: Fred, deceased; Willie, 
and James E., the last two mentioned being residents of St, Louis. 
His second wife was Laura C. Mayer (nee McLaughlin), whom 
he married at Mount Vernon in 1905. The only child by this 
union is Beechworth Brumbaugh, Jr. Mr. Brumbaugh has pros- 
pered and has considerable property interests outside of his mercan- 
dise operations. He owns two good farms in Williamson county, 
Illinois, and several pieces of valuable city real estate, including the 
building in which his store is located. Mr. and Mrs. Brumbaugh are 
members of the Methodist Episcopal church and enjoy a wide circle 
of acquaintances and friends. 


The medical profession has a number of able representatives in 
the city of Mount Vernon, among whom is the well known and suc- 
cessful physician and surgeon whose name furnishes the caption of 
this sketch. Although younger than the majority of his compeers 
Doctor Poole made commendable progress in his chosen calling and 
now commands a very extensive practice which has been as success- 
ful financially as professionally and which is steadily growing in 
magnitude and importance. He is a native of Jefferson county, Illi- 

460 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

nois, and the fourth of a family of five children whose parents, W. 
H. and Amelia Poole, were born in Tennessee and Illinois respec- 
tively, but who have spent their married life in Mount Vernon, 
where the father located in the year 1860. W. H. Poole learned 
the trade of wagon making when a young man and soon afterward 
locating in Mount Vernon started the first wagon making shop in 
Jefferson county, which he operated for a number of years with en- 
couraging financial results. An efficient mechanic who always took 
great pride in his work, his vehicles early acquired sqch a reputation 
for excellence that his establishment was taxed to its utmost capac- 
ity to meet the demand for them and for many years his wagons 
had an extensive sale throughout Jefferson county and were pre- 
ferred to any other on the market. As evidence of his skill and su- 
perior workmanship a number of the Poole wagons are still to be 
found in various parts of the county and although subjected to the 
usual rough usage of the farm and highway during the last thirty- 
five or forty years are still in good condition and bid fair to answer 
the purposes intended for many years longer. The maiden name 
of Mrs. W. H. Poole was Amelia Davidson. Her parents, Har- 
din and Asynith Davidson, were natives of Ohio, but in an early day 
moved to Jefferson county, Illinois, locating at Mount Vernon, where 
they reared a large family of fourteen children, the majority of whom 
grew to maturity and became well settled in life. Mrs. Poole, who 
is a native of Mount Vernon, has borne her husband five children, 
as follows: Fannie E., Gertrude M., Edith B., Dr. Charles J., of 
this review, and Ida B. 

William Poole, the Doctor's grandfather, was a Tennessean 
by birth and a cooper by trade. He was of Irish extraction, and is 
remembered as a good mechanic and a man of great industry and 
energy whose influence made for the material advancement of his 
community and the moral good of those with whom he came into 
contact. He had nine sons, all of whom adopted his own trade. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 461 

and became good workmen and respected citizens. William Poole 
came to Illinois a few years after his son, W. H., settled in Jeffer- 
son county and spent the remainder of his days in Mount Vernon, 
where his death occurred in 1890. Several of the doctor's ances- 
tors were noted for longevity, his great-grandmother, Mrs. Davis, 
having lived to the remarkable age of one hundred and seven years ; 
she had a sister who was ninety-eight years old at the time of her 
death and other members of the family were past the allotted three 
score and ten milestone before called to the other world. 

Dr. Charles Judson Poole was born June 27, 1874, in Mount 
Vernon, Illinois, and received his preliminary education in the 
schools of his native city, graduating from the high school in the 
year 1893. Having decided to devote his life to the noble and 
humane work of alleviating the suffering of his fellow mortals, he 
began the study of medicine shortly after finishing his literary edu- 
cation, and in 1 896 entered the Medical College at St. Louis, where 
he prosecuted his studies until completing the prescribed course, re- 
ceiving the degree of Doctor of Medicine, in the year 1900. Im- 
mediately following his graduation he .located at the town of Shiller, 
where he remained one year, at the expiration of which time he chose 
the larger and more mvitmg city of Mount Vernon in which to exer- 
cise his professional talents. His subsequent career in this field fully 
realized his expectations and won for him a conspicuous place among 
the successful physicians and surgeons of Jefferson county. Doctor 
Poole is a close student of medical science and has kept in touch 
with the latest advancement in his profession, being familiar with 
the recent discoveries in medicine and skillful in applying what he 
considers efficacious to the treatment of diseases. He combines many 
of the characteristics of the ideal family physician, including the 
pleasing personality and the faculty of gaining the confidence not 
only of patients but of their friends, also, without which some of the 
ablest medical men frequently fail to effect cures. 

462 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

As already indicated his career since locating in the city of his 
birth has been eminently satisfactory and he now numbers among his 
patients not a few of his erstwhile boyhood friends and companions 
and many others who had reached years of maturity when he was 
but a lad in kilts and knickerbockers. 

Doctor Poole avails himself of every opportunity to keep 
abreast of the times in all matters relating to his chosen calling and 
to this end holds membership with the Jefferson County Medical So- 
ciety, Southern Illinois Medical Association, the State Medical As- 
sociation and the American Medical Association, being familiar 
with the deliberations of these bodies and a regular attendant of 
those of a local character and a participant in the discussions of the 
same. He is also identified with several secret fraternal organiza- 
tions among which are the ancient and honorable orders of Masonry, 
Knights of Pythias, Red Men, Woodmen, Royal Neighbors, Mys- 
tic Workers, Ben Hur and the Knights and Ladies of Security. 

Although devoted to his profession the doctor manifests an 
abiding interest in public and political matters, and lends his assist- 
ance and influence to all worthy enterprises for the good of his city 
and the social intellectual and moral welfare of his fellow men. He 
is a Republican and for some years has been one of the leading 
workers of his party in Jefferson county, being at this time a member 
of the County Central Committee and a judicious and trusted ad- 
viser in political councils as well as an active and successful cam- 
paigner. Aside from representing his ward in the City Council he 
has held no elective office nor does he permit aspiration to public 
position interfere with his professional duties, being first of all a 
physician and making everything else subordinate thereto. 

Doctor Poole was married August 13, 1899, to Miss Grace 
Daniel, daughter of H. P. Daniel, of Waltonville, the father a pio- 
neer citizen of that town and an ex-soldier of the great Civil war. 
Doctor and Mrs. Poole are highly esteemed in the social life of 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 463 

Mount Vernon and have many warm friends both in the city and 
country. They are Baptists in their rehgious behef and influential 
members of the church in Mount Vernon, contributing Hberally to 
the material support of the organization and taking an mterest in 
furthering its good work in the community. One child has been 
born to them, a daughter by the name of Maeryta M., whose date of 
birth fell on the 25th of April, 1900. 


A great many of the most energetic, successful and reliable 
business men of America are either foreigners or direct descendants 
of people of foreign birth. Among the most prominent of this class 
are the Germans, who are so numerous throughout the land, making 
a splendid contribution to the thrift and stability of our population. 

Among the citizens of Woodlawn, Illinois, one of the most 
representative in character is the subject of this review, Louis F. 
Reichel, dealer in implements, farm machinery and vehicles. He 
was born in Chicago, Illinois, on the 14th day of May, 1880, the 
son of Robert and Amelia (Rusch) Reichel, both natives of Ger- 
many. These parents came to Woodlawn in 1882 and here Mrs. 
Reichel answered the call of the death angel October 16, 1903. 
She was the mother of eight children, of whom our subject is the only 
surviving member. 

As intimated above, Louis was but two years old when his par- 
ents came to Woodlawn, and it was here that he received his early 
education and training, and here he has spent the major portion of 
his life. He was educated in the village school and also took a 
course at Henney College, Irvington, Illinois. After reaching ma- 
turity he decided to follow a mercantile career, and accordingly en- 
tered into the service of his father and learned the business through 

464 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

this means. He continued in this relationship until 1903, and en- 
joyed a profitable experience, acquiring from his father many funda- 
mental ideas regarding business methods, and developing his own 
aptitudes and skill along these lines. At the date above mentioned 
he withdrew from the partnership with his father, and entered into 
business for himself and has continued this up to the present time. 
He has had a steady and substantial increase in patronage and is 
doing business now on a more extensive scale than ever before. He 
carries a varied line of implements and vehicles, and does all kinds 
of work in wood and iron. 

On the 21st of November, 1905, Mr. Reichel was joined in 
marriage to Miss Myrtle Scarborough, who was born in Jefferson 
county, and is a woman who evinces considerable skill in the man- 
agement of her domestic affairs. She has become the mother of one 
child, Walter. 

Mr. Reichel has been a member of the village Council and 
takes an active interest in all matters that pertain to the common wel- 
fare. He is a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, 
and also of the Modern Woodmen of America and stands well in 
the esteem of friends and acquaintances. 


One of the problems confronting the citizens of any community 
is that of securing competent men to represent them in the Legisla- 
tive halls of their state and country. Men of strong qualifications 
are usually difficult to obtain, for the reason that their business m- 
terests are such as to require all of their time and attention. Occa- 
sionally, however, one is found who will for a while forego the pres- 
sure of personal affairs and will champion the cause of his constitu- 


av THt 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 465 

€nts, even though it means a sacrifice. In the character of Hon. 
George B. Welborn we have such a citizen, and a few facts regard- 
ing his biography are herewith appended. 

Mr. Welborn was born at Mount Vernon, Indiana, on the 
3d of September, 1854, being the son of Dr. E. E. and Frances 
(Boswell) Welborn. When George was three months old, his 
parents removed to Centralia, Illinois, where for three years Doctor 
Welborn was engaged in the practice of medicine. He then re- 
moved to Mount Vernon, where he practiced his profession in con- 
nection with the management of a drug store, being engaged thus 
for about twelve years. He changed his location at various times 
to other towns and ended his days at Denver, Colorado. 1892. 
There were eight children, six still living, five in Colorado, in the 
family of whom our subject was the eldest. 

George B. received a common school education and later at- 
tended the well known institution at Irvington, Illinois. During the 
years of his earlier manhood, he was engaged in various occupations 
and while living at Hoyleton, Illinois, operated the drug store in 
partnership with his father, continuing there for eight years. In 
1 882 he came to Woodlawn and began business as a druggist, also. 
He had continued this up to the present time and is enjoying a 
large patronage, hie carries a full line of stock and has the confi- 
dence and support of the people and medical profession. 

In 1882 he was appointed postmaster of Woodlawn and has 
filled the office with the exception of eight years up to the present 
time. Being a staunch Republican, he has been called upon fre- 
quently to assist in the management of the party's affairs. For twen- 
ty-four years he has been a member of the Republican County Cen- 
tral Committee, and for two years was its chairman. Other offices 
of a local character have been filled by him, such as that of School 

Director, Township Supervisor, Police Magistrate, etc. In all of 

466 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

these he has conscientiously devoted his time to the careful and thor- 
ough discharge of ail duties devolving upon him. 

On November 5, 1908, he was elected to the lower house of 
the State Legislature, and will no doubt render creditable service in 
the cause of fair and honest legislation. 

Mr. Welborn was married at Centralia, Illinois, on New 
Year's day, 1882, to Miss Nellie E. Pratt, daughter of Frank and 
Teressa (Lynch) Pratt. Six children have graced this union, viz: 
Hattie, wife of Charles R. Slade; Arthur P., who is now post- 
master at Woodlawn; Frank E., Laura, Nellie and George. 

Mr. Welborn is a member of the Masonic fraternity, and he 
received the Knights Templar degree. He also belongs to the In- 
dependent Order of Odd Fellows and the Modern Woodmen of 
America. He is president of the Woodlawn Bank, and is a stock- 
holder in the Spingler Mercantile Company, besides having con- 
siderable land interests in the adjoining township. 

He is affable in disposition and through his unselfish devotion 
to the interest of the people has won a high place in the esteem of 
his many friends and acquaintances. It is to such men of wide ex- 
perience and unselfish devotion to the public interests that the citi- 
zens of our state are looking for the conservation of our present 


Among the native sons of Illinois who have achieved distinc- 
tion in prefessional life and attained to positions of honor and trust 
in the service of the public is A. C. Millspaugh, the present Clerk of 
the Appellate Court of the Fourth Appellate District, and since 
1 902 a prominent citizen of Mount Vernon. Mr. Millspaugh is de- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 467 

scended from good old Revolution stock and is deserving of especial 
notice among the representative men of his county and state. Daniel 
Millspaugh, his great-grandfather, the first of the family of whom 
there is any definite knowledge, was a native of New York, where 
his antecedents settled in colonial times, and a soldier in the war for 
Independence. He was among the first to reach the scene of action 
and fought behind the breast-works of Bunker Hill, in which battle 
he received a painful wound but not severe enough to prevent future 
service, as his subsequent career abundantly attests. Among the 
children of this sturdy patriot was a son by the name of John Mills- 
paugh, who was born in Orange county. New York, and by trade 
was a millwright. He reared a family and died many years ago in 
his native state where a number of his descendants are also sleeping 
the sleep that knows no waking. 

John Millspaugh, Jr., son of the aforementioned John, and 
father of the subject, was also a native of Orange county, but when 
young, went to Kentucky, where in due time he married Miss Sarah 
Bogan, whose people were among the pioneer settlers of that state. 
While still a young man, he migrated to White county, Illinois, and 
after a residence of a number of years in that and other parts of 
the state removed in 1876 to Gallatin county, where he spent the re- 
mainder of his life, dying in the month of October, 1 899. 

John Millspaugh was a physician and rose to high standing 
in the profession to which he devoted his energies and talents until 
his death. In many respects he was a remarkable man and made 
his presence felt for good among his fellows. A sturdy character, 
combined with noble aims and high ideals enabled him to wield a 
wide influence and such was his regard for morality that he always 
endeavored to realize in his own personality his high ideal of man- 
hood and citizenship. As a result he lived a pure, upright and noble 
life, never indulged in any kind of intoxicants nor touched tobacco 

468 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

in any form, never uttered a profane oath, but always adhered reli- 
giously to the truth both in word and action. By reason of temper- 
ate habits he grew old, and although eighty-three years of age when 
called to the other world he never used glasses, and his other physi- 
cal powers were as vigorous almost as in the days of his prime. Mrs. 
Millspaugh also reached a ripe old age and departed this life in 
1889. The family of this estimable couple consisted of nine chil- 
dren, among whom there has been but one death, although the 
youngest now living has passed the half century mark of his earthly 
sojourn. It is doubtful if the state offers another such example of 
longevity in a family as large as this, or of as fine physical develop- 
ment and splendid health among its members, both the latter char- 
acteristics being largely the result of temperate living and high moral 
aims on the part of the parents. 

J. W. Millspaugh, the oldest of the family, lives at Shawnee- 
town, Illinois; Mrs. Margaret E. Joyner, the second in order of 
birth, resides in the town of Equality, Gallatin county; after her in 
regular succession are Daniel, a farmer, of Gallatin county ; Mrs. 
Emma Fowler, of the same county; Robert L., of Shawneetown; 
J. M., a farmer and stock raiser who lives in the county of Gallatin, 
as does also W. L. Millspaugh, a resident of Equality, the subject 
of this review being the youngest of the number. 

A. C. Millspaugh was born September 26, 1858, in White 
county, Illinois, and remained with his father until attaining his ma- 
jority, assisting with the labors of the farm, the meanwhile, during 
winter seasons, attending the public schools. His last term of school 
was at Shawneetown after reaching the age of twenty-one, being 
obliged to pay five cents per day tuition, to earn which he worked 
of mornings and evenings at any kind of labor he could find. The 
schools of ShawTieetown at that time were considered among the best 
in Southern Illinois and animated by a desire to add to his knowl- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 469 

edge, young Millspaugh diligently studied and took advantage of 
every opportunity to fit himself for some honorable calling and rise 
above the common place. Later he worked for a few years in the 
Circuit Clerk's office at Shawneetown and while thus engaged de- 
voted his leisure time to the study of law for which he early mani- 
fested a decided preference. He also served as City Clerk of 
Shawneetown and after his admission to the bar in 1 889, was elected 
City Attorney, the duties of which office he discharged in an able 
and satisfactory manner, meanwhile building up a lucrative law 
practice and forging rapidly to the front among the rising young 
members of his profession in the county of Gallatin. 

Subsequently Mr. Millspaugh was honored by being elected 
Mayor of Shawneetown and after filling the office with credit to 
himself and to the satisfaction of the public resumed the practice of 
law which he conducted with success until January, 1 897, when he 
was appointed Chief Clerk of the Southern Illinois Penitentiary at 
Chester, which position he held by successive re-appointments dur- 
ing the six years ensuing. While serving in the capacity he was 
elected in 1 902 Clerk of the Appellate Court of the Fourth District, 
composed of thirty-four counties in the southern part of the state, be- 
ing the only Republican thus honored since the court was established 
in 1877, a period of thirty-four years previous to his election. 

Resigning his position with the Penitentiary after six years of 
faithful service, Mr. Millspaugh in December, 1902, entered upon 
his duties as Clerk of the Court and the better to perform, removed 
the same year to Mount Vernon, where he has since resided and 
with the interests of which he has been actively identified. The po- 
litical career of Mr. Millspaugh presents a series of successes seldom 
equaled in the history of the majority of public officials in that he 
has been victorious in every contest in which he took part and equally 
fortunate in the matter of his appointment, in which he was opposed 

470 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

by quite a number of splendidly equipped competitors from different 
parts of the state. His election as City Attorney, City Clerk and 
Mayor were in regular succession, then his appointment over sev- 
eral estimable contestants and lastly his election to the clerkship of 
the Appellate Court and his re-nomination for in 1 908 and re-elec- 
tion to the same positipn. 

Mr. Millspaugh on January 14, 1894, contracted a matri- 
monial alliance with Miss Julia Scanland, of Shawneetown, whose 
father, the late William Scanland, was for many years a leading 
business man and prominent citizen of that city. The marriage was 
without issue. Mr. Millspaugh is greatly interested in secret fra- 
ternal work and belongs to several orders, including the Free and 
Accepted Masons in which he has taken a number of degrees from 
the Blue Lodge and Royal Arch to that of Sir Knight, holding 
membership unto the former at Shawneetown and the Chapter and 
Commandery at Mount Vernon. He is also connected with the 
Knights of Pythias in this city, the Knights of Khorassan and Be- 
nevolent and Protective Order of Elks in East St. Louis. In his 
personal relation he is exceedingly popular and possesses those qual- 
ities which win and retain warm friendships. As stated in a pre- 
ceeding paragraph, his career has been one of continuous advance- 
ment and prosperity, the result of industry, integrity and the high 
sense of honor which commands respect and confidence and never 
permits its possessor stoop to anything narrow or in the least degree, 
low or degrading. As a lawyer he might have achieved marked suc- 
cess had his attention not been directed to other lines of endeavor, 
in the political arena. His course has ever been above criticism as 
v^itness his election to an important office in a district where Demo- 
cratic success has long been beyond the suspicion of doubt and as a 
man and citizen he is broad minded, liberal and progressive, a true 
type of the enterprising self-made American of today. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 471 


In the list of representative citizens of the city of Mount Ver- 
non, the name of Clarence Harriss deserves consideration. Although 
his personal preference is to keep himself in the background, yet his 
quiet demeanor and unassuming ways have won for him a high place 
in the esteem of friends and fellow citizens. 

Mr. Harriss was born in Perry county, Illinois, December 7, 
1866. His father, the Rev. J. Carroll Harriss, is also a native of 
Perry county, and is now living at DuQuoin, Illinois. He has been 
actively at work in the ministry for the last thirty-two years, and is 
a veteran of the Civil war, having enlisted in 1862 in the Eighty- 
first Illinois Volunteer Infantry and served throughout the war. His 
experience in this historic conflict was not unlike those of many more 
of the boys who wore the blue but it seems that he was destined 
to suffer to as full an extent as could be endured without falling into 
the hands of death itself. 

For eleven months he endured the doom of a prisoner of war, 
eight of which were spent in Andersonville, an experience which 
needs no comment to the modern reader, inasmuch as the conditions 
and management of that institution are now matters of history, grue- 
some and unthinkable as many of them were. Mr. Harriss par- 
ticipated in many of the hard-fought battles of the war, such as 
Vicksburg, Champion Hill, Guntown, Mississippi, Red River cam- 
paign, etc. At Vicksburg he received a serious wound in the arm 
from a bursting shell and at two other times he received gunshot 
wounds that were not of a serious nature. At Guntown, Mississippi, 
he was made prisoner and the time thus lost has always been a mat- 
ter of regret to him, not on account of personal suffering, which was 
severe, but because of being compelled to remain inactive when his 
greatest desire was to be in the forefront of the firing line. 

472 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

Jordan Harriss, grandfather of our subject, was a native of 
South CaroHna, and came to Perry county, Illinois, in 1828, fol- 
lowing farming. He was born on May 7, 1800, and died in 
March, 1874. He was a plain, honest citizen, thrifty and indus- 

Our subject's maternal ancestors came to Illinois from Ten- 
nessee. His mother, Valeria (Thornton) Harriss, was the daugh- 
ter of William Thornton, a Baptist minister, who came to Perry 
county, Illinois, early in the fifties. When Clarence was two years 
old, his mother died, leaving two children, the other child being a 
daughter, Viola, who is now the wife of Aaron King, of Ewing, 
■ Illinois. In 1 870 our subject's father was married to Miss Eliza 
Strait, daughter of Judge Strait, one of the pioneer judges of Perry 
county. Seven children were born to this union, viz: Walter H., a 
Baptist minister, now of Blue Island, Illinois; Herschell S., de- 
ceased; Alva, who died in infancy; Mrs. Grace H. King, of Blue 
Island, IlHnois; Wilfred Carroll, deceased; Judson E., now in the 
law school of the State University of Illinois, Earl B., clerk in 
the Illinois Central Railroad Company's freight office at DuQuoin, 

Our subject received his early education in the common schools 
of Perry county. In 1882, he enrolled for the classical course at 
Ewing College and applied himself assiduously to his studies, grad- 
uating from that institution in 1888. He was for four years prin- 
cipal of the DuQuoin high school and was principal of the aca- 
demic department of Ewing College in 1890-91. In 1895 he en- 
tered the law office of Judge A. D. Webb, with whom he formed a 
partnership, this relationship continuing up to the present time. Mr. 
Harriss gives special attention to abstracting of titles and clerical 
work, and is especially proficient as an abstracter. His thorough 
methods and unimpeachable integrity have won for him a wide cir- 
cle of friends and patrons. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO.. ILL. 473 

On July 7, 1 898, Mr. Harriss was joined in marriage to Miss 
Grace Herdman, daughter of William H. Herdman, a pioneer of 
Jefferson county who lived in this vicinity for over fifty years be- 
fore his death in 1904. Mrs. Harriss is a woman of refined man- 
ners and excellent taste. She was a teacher in the public schools 
before her marriage. 

Mr. Harriss takes an active part in the general affairs of the 
community. He is a member of the Masonic fraternity and has, 
since 1901, been secretary of H. W. Hubbard Chapter No. 160, 
Royal Arch Masons. He belongs to Mount Vernon Lodge, No. 3 1 , 
Ancient Free and Accepted Masons, and to Patton Commandery, 
No. 69. He takes a deep interest in the political welfare of the 
county, city and community. He was president of the Mount Ver- 
non School Board in 1903. 

Mr. Harriss is a member of the First Baptist church at Mount 
Vernon. He has for seven years acted as superintendent of the 
Sunday school and is at present acting as such. He is prouder of 
this honor than of any that could be given him. His home, his fam- 
ily and the Sunday school are the objects nearest and dearest to 
his heart. 


The Whitlocks were a substantial old Virginia family that 
sent out its sons to enrich various states of the West and thus left 
a good record wherever they settled. R. R. Whitlock, when a 
young man, left the Old Dominion to try his fortunes in Tennessee, 
but eventually went to Kentucky and finally pushed on to the prom- 
ising younger commonwealth of Illinois. He arrived about 1856 
and established a home in Field township, Jefferson county, where 
he ended his earthly career in 1874. For many years he held a 

474 wall's history of jefferson co., ill, 

position in the post-office department at Memphis, Tennessee, but 
was compelled to give this up on account of his health. He served 
as captain of a company during the Civil war and contributed five 
sons to the service of his country during that great conflict. His son, 
George L. Whitlock, who was born in Tennessee, spent some time 
in Kentucky, but found his way to Illinois in 1 854, settling first in 
Marion county for a year and then removed to Jefferson county. 
He finally secured a farm in Field township and in this place he has 
been living since 1861. He enlisted in the Eightieth Regiment Illi- 
nois Cavalry and served honorably with that command during the 
Civil war. He married Margaret F. Patton, a native of Kentucky, 
while he was a resident of the state, and his bride came with him to 
the Prairie state, where their fortunes have been closely linked to- 
gether for over sixty years. They have had ten children, namely: 
Robert B., who died in 1904; Mrs. Eldora J. Frost, of Field town- 
ship; John T., the subject of this sketch; Mrs. Doke Lenty. of Far- 
rington township; George E., a resident of Mount Vernon; Mrs. 
Sarah A. Holtzclaw, of Shiloh township; William P., of Field 
township; Mrs. Alta Carpenter, of Johnson City, Illinois; Mrs. 
Maggie Brown, of Field township, and Jessie B., also of Field 
township. Most of these children lived in Jefferson county and 
nearly all on farms adjoining that of their father. 

John T. Whitlock was born near Dix, Jefferson county, Illi- 
nois, November 15, 1860. After finishing his studies in the local 
schools, he spent nearly five years at Ewing College in Franklin 
county. From there he went to Shurtleff College at Upper Alton, 
taking the literary course and graduating in the class of 1 887. After 
teaching a year in the Spring Garden high school, he began the study 
of medicine, later entered the Missouri Medical College at St. 
Louis, and obtained his degree in 1890. He opened an office at 
Dix and carried on a successful practice there for twelve years. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 475 

meantime taking a post-graduate course at the Chicago PolycHnic 
College. After his location at Mount Vernon, he took a post-grad- 
uate course in the New York Polyclinic and altogether obtained 
a thorough and up-to-date medical education. 

A short time after coming to the county seat he opened the 
Mount Vernon Hospital in connection with other physicians, but 
these he subsequently bought out and was sole manager for about 
three years and a half. Eventually he disposed of his interests and 
severed his connection with the institution and since then has devoted 
his entire time to his large general practice. Doctor Whitlock is a mem- 
ber of the Illinois State, Southern Illinois and Jefferson County 
Medical Societies and president of the last named. He is director 
of the Ham National Bank and owns a large farm in Dodds town- 
ship, besides a cosy residence and office at 812 Main street. He has 
served four years as Coroner and was elected as a candidate of the 
Republican party. His fraternal connections are with the Knights 
of Pythias, Modern Woodmen and Ben Hur. 

Doctor Whitlock has been twice married, first in December, 
1 884, to Mary Billingsley, a Kentucky lady, resident for some years 
at Ewing, Illinois. She died in March, 1886, leaving one son, John 
Kelley Whitlock, six days old at the time of his mother's death, and 
now a farmer in Field township. In August, 1894, Doctor Whit- 
lock married Cora Clark, a native of Jefferson county. He stands 
high both in his profession and as a good, all-round citizen, reliable, 
enterprising and public-spirited. His great-grandfather was Thom- 
as Whitlock, who came to Illinois at a very early day, settling 
at Dix, in Jefferson county, where he kept tavern on the old Van- 
dalia and St. Louis stage line. The family is perhaps the oldest in 
Jefferson county, as it has been represented here by six generations. 
The Whitlocks have been potential factors in the development and 
growing of this fine agricultural section. 

476 wall's history of jefferson cc, ill. 


Progress along all professional lines forms one of the prom- 
inent characteristics of the age in which we live. Startling dis- 
coveries in science are announced to a wondering world with amaz- 
ing frequency, and achievements in the fields of industry and inven- 
tion are a constant source of astonishment, even to those of the most 
sanguine and optimistic turn of mind. In the domain of medicme 
the advance has kept pace with modern achievements m other hnes, 
and many diseases and ailments that were once the scourge and 
terror of mankind are being rapidly brought under control and will, 
no doubt, become entirely stamped out of existence. Among the 
promising young men in this profession in Jefferson county is the 
gentleman whose name introduces this article. 

Dr. Thomas B. Williamson was born in this county in 1884. 
and is the son of Thomas and Dora (Phillips) Williamson, the 
former being a native of Kentucky and the latter of Illinois. Doc- 
tor Williamson's grandfather was an Englishman, having emigrated 
to America, and settled in Kentucky, where he engaged in farming 
and stock raising. He was an expert judge of good stock and was 
successful in raising fine blooded horses, achieving a reputation which 
was far more than local in its scope. He died in 1871, having at- 
tained the age of eighty-seven years. Three children were born to 
him, one of whom, our subject's father, came to Illinois in 1861. 
He settled in Jefferson county and devoted himself to farming, and 
departed this life in 1 884. His companion died at the age of thir-» 
ty-four. Thomas was the only child born to this union. 

Our subject was educated in the McLeansboro schools, where 
he finished the high school course. Following this he spent two 
years at Ewing College, and then decided to make preparation for 
the practice of medicine. He accordingly became a student in the 

wall's history of JEFFEtlSON CO.. ILL. 477 

Medical College of St. Louis, from which he graduated in June, 
1906. He spent one year in active work in the Metropolitan Hos- 
pital of St. Louis, after which he came to Opdyke, where he has 
followed his profession up to the present time. He has built up a 
good practice, and has readily established himself in the confidence 
and esteem of neighbors and friends. His skill in diagnosing dis- 
eases and thorough knowledge of modern methods of treatment have 
enabled him to achieve success in the face of many unfavorable 

On August 5, 1906, Doctor Williamson was joined in mar- 
riage to Miss Lillian D. Kern, who was born in Franklin county, 
this state. One daughter has graced this union, viz., Lucille Fran- 
ces, born December 13, 1907. 

Our subject takes an active part in the social and public life 
of the community. He is a member of the Masonic fraternity, the 
Royal Neighbors, and the Modern Woodmen, acting as exam- 
ining physician for the last two orders. 

Doctor Williamson is a Republican, and he maintains a strict 
stand for integrity in the discharge of all public obligations. His 
church affiliations are with the Baptist denomination. 


One of the best known real estate and insurance agents in Jef- 
ferson county is the gentleman whose name forms the subject of this 
article. Mr. Farmer has had a wide acquaintance and a varied 
experience and has built up a remunerative business which brings him 
constantly in touch with a large number of the citizens in the county. 

Frank P. Farmer was born in Washington county, Illinois, 

478 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

on August 1 , 1 852. His father, James W. Farmer, and his grand- 
father, John Farmer, were natives of Blount county, Tennessee. His 
father came to Illinois when a young man and settled on a farm in 
Washington county. He was a man of positive convictions and un- 
alloyed patriotism, having practically given his life for the service 
of his country during the Mexican war. He was wounded at the 
battle of Buena Vista, a bullet having passed entirely through his 
body. The wound was dressed by drawing a silk handkerchief en- 
tirely through it. Although he lived for twelve years after the 
event took place, he never recovered from the effects of the shock 
and his death came as a result of this misfortune. Our subject's 
mother, Sarah (Waters) Farmer, was also a native of Ten- 
nessee. Her death took place three years before that of her hus- 
band. She was the mother of ten children, of whom Frank P. was 
the youngest. The other surviving children are Samuel L., resid- 
ing at Elk Prairie, this county; Mrs. Sarah HoUenbeck of Cape 
Girardeau, Missouri, and Mrs. Pauline Reed, of Richview, Illinois. 

Mr. Farmer was reared on the parental homestead in Wash- 
ington county, Illinois, living at Ashley for the major part of the 
time. He received such education as was afforded by the common 
schools of the district, but he has not let his education stop at the 
doors of the school room, for he has made his elementary schooling 
the tool for the acquirement of additional training and equipment 
for the business of life. After reaching his majority he spent sev- 
eral years at railroading, and later turned his attention to barbering. 
He continued at the latter occupation for about twenty years, com- 
ing to Jefferson county in 1 888. He opened up a shop here in the 
meantime and made a good general acquaintance with the people 
of the city. 

Owing to his firmness and his decided stand for civic advance- 
ment, he soon became prominent in the estimation of the public, and 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 479 

in 1891, was made Chief of Police by Mayor Watson, and served 
for a period of two years. He was a fearless and progressive offi- 
cer, and did much to bring about some needed changes in the man- 
agement of his department. Owing to his efforts, the city police 
were uniformed, and the working plans of the force were propor- 
tionately improved. His zeal for the enforcement of the law was 
highly commendable and he was sustamed by the better element of 
the city. One experience while in office almost cost him his life. 
While engaged in suppressing a disturbance caused by a gang of 
toughs, he was seized and unmercifully beaten, so much so that for a 
time his life hung in the balance. After lying in bed for seven 
weeks, he was finally able to get out again, and ultimately recovered 
his health. 

After leaving the work of the department Mr. Farmer became 
tower man for the Louisville & Nashville, the Wabash & Chester 
railroads, contmumg m that department for over seven years. His 
usual care and thoroughness characterized his work here, and during 
that period he had but one slight accident. 

Following this he returned to barbering and continued at this 
trade for three and one-half years, and in 1905 began his present 
venture, viz., that of handling real estate, insurance and collections. 
He has built up an extensive business and handles both accident and 
fire insurance. He occupies suites five and six in the Allen build- 
ing and a visit to these commodius quarters cannot fail to give one a 
favorable impression of the business-like atmosphere. 

In 1874 Mr. Farmer was married to Miss Ida M. Crowder, 
daughter of William Crowder, of Jefferson county. Three chil- 
dren were born to this union, two of whom survive, the second, Ger- 
trude, being deceased. Rolla E. was born March 28, 1875. Gus- 
sie I., born January 19, 1881, is the wife of Murphy Redix, now 
living at Howell, Indiana. 

480 wall's history of jefferson co., ill, 

Rolla E. is train dispatcher for the Queen & Crescent Rail- 
road, and is located at Danville, Kentucky. Mr. Redix is railroad 
conductor on the Louisville & Nashville Railroad, and has had sev- 
eral years of successful experience in the railroad work. 

Mr. Farmer is a member of the Marion Lodge, No. 1 3, Inde- 
pendent Order of Odd Fellows. He is an active worker in the 
order and he has contributed much to its success in this vicinity. He 
is also a prominent worker in the Modern Woodmen of America, 
Camp No. 1919, and was sent as a delegate by that lodge to the 
national convention, held at Peoria, Illinois, 1908. He adheres to 
the Democratic party and believes heartily in making the party come 
up to the level of the people's expectations, inasmuch as the party 
should be the expression of that which is the highest and best in the 
thought of the public. 


Mr. Wilson's name is associated with progress in the county of 
his birth and among those in whose midst he has always lived he is 
held in highest esteem by reason of an upright life of fidelity to 
principles and a kind regard for his fellow citizens and by reason of 
his industry and close application to his work he has succeeded in a 
material way and is one of the representative citizens of Temple- 
ton township. 

Albert Wilson was born in Ohio, but reared in Jefferson coun- 
ty, IlHnois, the date of his birth being 1853. He is the son of Hugh 
and Clista E. (Hill) Wilson. Grandfather Wilson was born in 
Ireland, and came to America and settled in Ohio, in which state 
he lived on a farm and died at the age of seventy-five years. Grand- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 481 

mother Wilson passed away when about forty years old. She and 
her husband were Presbyterians, and to them eight children were 
born, all of whom grew to maturity. A brother of the subject's 
grandfather Wilson died while in the Civil war, having been a mem- 
ber of an Ohio regiment. George Hill was the subject's maternal 

Hugh Wilson, father of the subject, was educated in Ohio, 
to which state he was brought from Ireland when a boy. He lived 
in the Buckeye state until he was about thirty years old, engaged in 
farm work. In 1862 he enlisted in the Union army. Company E, 
Eightieth Illinois Volunteer Infantry, and was killed in Kentucky 
by guerillas. He was buried in that state, having served about a 
year. He left a widow. He was twice married and the father of 
six children, two by our subject's mother who was his first wife and 
who died early in life. She was a Methodist, as was also her hus- 

Albert Wilson was reared on a farm and attended the public 
schools in his home community when a boy. He worked on the 
home place until he was twenty-five years old when he began rail- 
roading, which he followed successfully for a period of ten years. 
He worked in a car shop at Mount Vernon for six years, and also 
worked in a general store as clerk for a period of six years. He has 
been postmaster at Belle Rive for seven years, and in whatever capa- 
city we find him he gives the greatest satisfaction for he attends 
strictly to his business, whatever he may have in hand, and useless 
to say that success has attended his efforts. 

Mr. Wilson was united in marriage in 1881 to Rose Guthrie, a 
native of Jefferson county. Her people were from Ohio. Her fa- 
ther was a soldier in Company E, Eightieth Illinois Volunteer In- 
fantry. He returned home and died from a disease contracted while 
in the service. Two children were born to our subject and wife, 

482 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

J. Claude, born in 1883, is single and is living at home with his par- 
ents; Stella, born in 1888, is also single and is living at home. J. 
Claude Wilson is a member of the Masonic fraternity, the Royal 
Arch at Mount Vernon and the Blue Lodge at Belle Rive. The 
subject and wife and their daughter are members of the Methodist 
church. In politics Mr. Wilson is a Republican. 

He likes to tell of his father, who was a man of sterling char- 
acter, and be relates the interesting details of his death. Hugh Wil- 
son was an orderly sergeant in the Federal army, was captured and 
sent to Libby prison. He was wounded while building breastworks 
and it was some time before he was able to attend to regular duty. 
He was detailed to carry mail between the two armies. A band of 
guerillas captured him, took him into the woods and murdered him. 
The band was led by the once noted Sue Mundy, who was a resi- 
dent of the community where he was captured. Most of the citi- 
zens there were in sympathy with the Union cause. They discovered 
that a Union soldier had been murdered, finding his body in the for- 
est and on it a letter that had been pierced by the ball that had en- 
tered the heart of Mr. Wilson. This letter was from his wife at 
Mount Vernon, Illinois. They buried the remains and sent the sum 
of four dollars, which was found on the body, to Mrs. Wilson. They 
also had photographs of the remains taken. The subject has one 
of these pictures. The subject's father was shot five times and 
stabbed twice, as is shown in the following extract from the Louis- 
ville, Kentucky, Journal, under the caption, "Sue Mundy Again; 
Her Atrocities." 

"A correspondent writing from Jeffersontown, in this state, 
under the date of October 14, furnishes some details of the opera- 
tions of the outlaw under Captain Berry in that vicinity. 

"We published last week an account of their depredations at 
Harrodsburg. After passing Conley's toll-gate, the outlaws started 
for their camp, in Spencer county, twelve miles from Jeffersontown. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO.. ILL. 483 

"A number of the citizens on the road were met, halted and 
robbed of their valuables. Mr. Finley was knocked down and re- 
lieved of his watch and money. Abraham Fink was robbed of his 
fine horse, and all the money he had about his person. Mr. and 
Mrs. Haller, Mr. Phillips and lady, Mrs. James Goose, and others 
were treated in the same cavalier manner, halted on the highway and 
robbed of their purses and valuables. About eight o'clock in the 
forenoon, the marauding gang, with Berry and Sue Mundy at its 
head dashed into Jeffersontown and took forcible possession of the 

"A negro boy belonging to Mount Vernon was mounted on a 
horse, armed in the most complete manner and rode with the gang. 
He stood guard over the horses in Jeffersontown, while the scoun- 
drels were scattered about the town engaged in robbing the people. 
Sue Mundy dismounted at the Davis house and had her canteen 
filled wath whiskey. The negro recruit had learned the duties of 
his vocation, and in the coolest manner imaginable relieved a number 
of his Ethiopian brothers of their pocket change. The outlaws had 
captured a Federal soldier along the road and retained him as their 

"After plundering the town the guerillas mounted their horses 
and departed from the place, moving on the Heady road. They 
proceeded to a dark ravine in the woods of Mr. Joseph Latherman, 
where a halt was ordered and subsequent developments proved 
that they murdered their prisoner in cold blood. 

"The discharge of a firearm was heard in the vicinity by sev- 
eral parties, but they were ignorant of the cause. A short time after 
the reports were heard, James Simpson on his way to Jeffersontown 
was met in the road by the outlaws and robbed of twenty-seveni 
dollars in money. He observed that Sue Mundy's pistol was emp- 
ty and the fresh stain showed that it had but very recently been dis- 


464 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

charged. While Mr. Simpson was being robbed this she-devil en- 
gaged in reloading the revolver. She pointed the muzzle at the 
breast of Mr. Simpson and smiled with fiendish satisfaction at his 
embarrassment as she capped the tube of each barrel of the cylinder. 

"After being released Mr. Simpson road directly to Jefferson- 
town and related his adventure. He was informed, that with the 
prisoner in Federal uniform the party numbered eight when in town. 
He met but seven on the road, and was positive that no prisoner 
accompanied the outlaws. 

"The citizens at once surmised that the soldier had been mur- 
dered, and following the trail of the guerillas, they approached the 
dark ravine, and found that their worst apprehensions were only 
too true. The day passed and the moon looked down from a cloud- 
less sky. The dead body of the prisoner was discovered. He was 
stretched upon his back and rays of the moon fell softly upon his 
cold, white, upturned face, bathing it in a ghostly light adding a 
strange, fearful power to the ashen hue of death. His body was 
marked with five pistol shot wounds and two deep stabs, as if made 
by the keen edge of a dagger. All circumstances go to prove that 
the murder was committed by one hand and that hand. Sue Mun- 
dy's, the outlaw woman, and the wild daring leader of the band. 
By a record in a small memorandum book found upon the dead 
body it was learned that the name of the murdered man was Hugh 
Wilson. Upon his person was also found a letter dated Mount 
Vernon, Illinois, and presumed to be from his wife as it commenced 
with, "My dear husband." She wrote in an affectionate manner 
and spoke with loving fondness of their pleasant home, and little 
darling ones who "sent their love to Pa." This letter, from the 
home of his love, and written with so much tenderness, was found in 
his bosom, pierced by balls and stained with the crimson blood that 
gushed in warm life-torrents from his heart. A new mound has been 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 485 

heaped in the little graveyard at Jeffersontown, and there the mur- 
dered soldier sleeps. After the perpetration of this cold blooded, 
fienish outrage the outlaws rode directly for their camp. They were 
pursued a short distance by a party of mounted citizens from Jeffer- 
sontown, but without effect. Sue Mundy, the tigress, seems to be 
wholly abandoned; lost to every kind, womanly feeling and exult- 
ing in scenes of blood, leads her desperate followers on to the per- 
petration of the most damnable outrages. Her many atrocities will 
be remembered and we trust will be the means of bringing her to the 


Among the substantial business men of Mount Vernon, we 
here make mention of William L. Owen, well known throughout 
the country as a dealer in high-grade monuments. Mr. Owen was 
born at Fairfield, Illinois, on the 30th day of May, 1 866. His fa- 
ther, William M. Owen, was a native of Cave City, Barren county. 
Kentucky, and came to Illinois with his parents when about ten 
years old, settling near Fairfield, in Wayne county. He followed 
farming and became a local preacher in the Methodist church, and 
held several township offices. His death occurred near Fairfield, 
on December 22, 1902. James Owen, grandfather of our sub- 
ject, was also a native of Kentucky. He was one of the pioneers of 
Wayne county, and passed to his reward near Fairfield in 1869. 
Our subject's mother, Nancy C. Owen, this being her name be- 
fore marriage also, was the daughter of Epaphroditus Owen, who 
was also one of the pioneers of Wayne county. His home was the 
third house built in Fairfield. Mrs. Owen was bom in 1 832 on the 
farm where she still lives. She was the mother of six children, all 

486 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

but one of whom are still living, only one death having occurred in 
the family within fifty-two years. The children are, Mrs. Abigail 
Schell, of Fairfield, Illinois; Edwin M., deceased; Mrs. Lonetta V. 
Nicholas, of Fairfield; William L., Charlie F., and May, the last 
named being still home with her mother. 

Our subject spent his early life in Fairfield, receiving his com- 
mon school education there. Later he spent a year at the Normal 
School at Danville, Indiana, and then turned his attention to the 
learning of his trade, of marble cutting. He began his apprentice- 
ship with John D. Reinhard, of Fairfield, and served in that capa- 
city for three years. He then entered the employment of G. G. 
Smith, of Mount Vernon, and remained with him for one year, after 
which he joined the Litchfield Marble & Granite Company, of 
Litchfield, Illinois. Here he continued for two years, and then 
went to work for W. M. Morris at Charlestown, Missouri, remain- 
ing there for one year. In 1 894 he returned to Mount Vernon, and 
was again employed by G. G. Smith. In March, 1 896, he removed 
to Tipton, Missouri, and went into business for himself, continuing 
there for one year, after which he removed to Montgomery City, 
Missouri, remaining there until 1901 . He then came back to Mount 
Vernon and bought out the firm of Johnson & Browder, and since 
that time has built up quite a lucrative business. He handles high 
grade material and does first class work, having the most modern 
equipment known to the trade. 

On April 20, 1892, he was joined in marriage to Fannie A. 
(Burns) Carter, of Mount Vernon, daughter of Jacob Burns, a 
native of Pennsylvania. She has become the mother of two chil- 
dren, both of whom are deceased. 

Mr. Owen belongs to Mount Vernon Lodge, No. 3 1 , Ancient 
Free and Accepted Masons, and the H. N. Hubbard Chapter, 
No. 1 60. He is a member of the Eagles and the Modern Wood- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 487 

men. He affiliates with the Republican party and identifies himself 
with the progressive element of the community. His genuine hon- 
esty and unpretentious demeanor have won him many friends and 
he holds a commendable place in the esteem of the business men of 
the city. 


Although not enlivened with much of incident or adventure, 
the life of Mr. Hutchison has been given up to the faithful discharge 
of the duties that make up the prose and poetry of everyday life. 
His career has been that of an excellent citizen and a most estimable 
man and is typical of all that is embodied in the general run of an 
American experience. His life is an illustration of that sturdy citi- 
zenship and determined manhood that have made this country great 
at home and respected abroad, and given our record to history as 
an impressive example of rapid development, unhalting progress, 
and all conquering ingenuity and power. Our land is one of 
boundless opportunities and the men who have the capacity to see 
and use this opportunity never fail to make headway. Mr. Hutch- 
ison has made practically his own way in the world and is entitled 
to the full satisfaction of his triumph over circumstances. 

John L. Hutchison was born near Mount Vernon, Jefferson 
county, Illinois, on March 20, 1854, the son of Johnson and Mary 
E. (Parker) Hutchison, the former being a native of Tennessee, 
and the latter of Kentucky. William Hutchison, the grandfather 
of our subject, came to Tennessee from Virginia and later in 1 849 
removed with his family to Illinois, settling on a farm near Mount 
Vernon, where he departed this life in 1864. Several years ago 
Johnson Hutchison retired from active work in the management of 

488 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

the farm and took up his residence in Mount Vernon, where he 
ended his days, November 16, 1901 . His companion in Hfe passed 
to her reward in about 1875. Nine children were born into this 
family, of whom John L., our subject, was the oldest. The others 
were: Mrs. Wincy Jane Atkinson, of Cottonwood Falls, Kansas; 
Mrs. Mary Emer Burk, deceased; Walter Rollo, of Dexter, Mis- 
souri; Mrs. Laura T. Frost, of Mount Vernon; William H., of 
Mount Vernon; Mrs. Almeda Hicks, of Howell, Indiana; Mrs. 
Rosa Boswell, deceased, and Samuel M., of Mount Vernon. 

Our subject lived on the farm until he was twenty-three years 
old. He received a common school education, and this with the 
wholesome lessons of self reliance and personal responsibility that 
come to the boy on the farm, the elements that entered into his equip- 
ment for the days that lay before him. Upon leaving the farm he 
came to Mount Vernon and went into the grocery business. This 
was in September, 1877. He began at the location that he now 
occupies, and has been here continuously since that time making 
thirty-one years of uninterrupted activity. This is certainly a com- 
pliment to his business ability and integrity which have never lacked 
for an abundant patronage, and his store at 221 East Main street 
is one of the best known establishments in the city, having been so 
long associated with the growing interest of the community. 

Although he has devoted the major part of his time to his busi- 
ness Mr. Hutchison has also kept in touch with life on the soil and 
now devotes considerable attention to the management of his farm 
which is located about one mile east of Mount Vernon. This farm 
shows the result of careful management and intelligent supervision, 
for Mr. Hutchison has kept fully abreast of the times on questions 
relating to agriculture, grazing, etc., and this work affords him con- 
siderable pleasure as well as profit. His farm is well equipped with 
the necessary buildings and the other improvements that go to make 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 489 

up a complete homestead, and the general appearance of the place 
indicates both thrift and excellent taste. 

Mr. Hutchison's domestic life began on February 14, 1877. 
when he was joined in marriage to Matilda D. Libengood, daughter 
of John Libengood, St., this family being natives of Ohio. Seven 
children have been born to this union, six of whom survive. They 
are George, of Mount Vernon, a bridge carpenter for the Chicago 
& Eastern Illinois Railroad; Elmer died at the age of twelve 
months; Mrs. Essa May Hannon, of Mount Vernon; Mrs. Jessie 
McFatridge, of New Baden, Illinois; and Eugene, John and 
Homer, all at home. 

Mr. Hutchison belongs to Marion Lodge, Independent Order 
of Odd Fellows, and is one of the senior members of the order. He 
is in thorough accord with its teachings and is a worthy exponent of 
the principles for which this noble organization stands. 


One of the most substantial and best known citizens in the vi- 
cinity of Woodlawn, Illinois, is the gentleman whose name heads this 
biography. Willis D. Maynor was bom at Mount Vernon, Illinois, 
on October 31, 1861. His father, Stephen H. Maynor, came to 
Illinois from Tennessee and ended his days in Farrington township, 
this county, on August 19, 1894, having attained the age of fifty- 
six years. Our subject's mother, Ellen (Ward) Maynor. was a 
native of Wilson county, Tennessee. She was born February 19, 
1843, and still survives. She became the mother of twelve children, 
of whom Willis was the eldest. 

The first twelve years of his life Mr. Maynor spent in Mount 

490 wall's history of jefferson co.. ill. 

Vernon, after which his father removed to Pendleton township, 
and here our subject grew to manhood. 

Although he received but a common school education, the farm 
was his training school and here he acquired the traits of nigged 
honesty and sterling integrity that have marked him in his later years. 

At the age of twenty-one he left the farm and began to famil- 
iarize himself with the milling business with a view of taking it up 
as a permanent work. He began at Spring Garden, Illinois, and 
remained there as an apprentice for three years, after which he 
opened up a mill for himself at Woodlawn, Illinois, continuing here 
for six years. He was a successful miller and enjoyed a good trade, 
being popular among the people. His courteous manner and fair 
dealing won for him many warm friends, but on account of ill 
health he was compelled to abandon the work. 

He accordingly disposed of his milling interests in July, 1 898, 
and entered the mercantile field in Woodlawn, and has continued 
therein up to the present time. In this he has met with his usual suc- 
cess, as his business methods emd sound sense have enabled him to 
obtain and hold a commendable patronage. He carries a general 
stock of merchandise, sufficient in variety and quality to supply all 
demands and is satisfied with moderate prices. 

On November 19, 1887, he was married to Miss Ida M. 
Scarborough, who was born at Spring Garden, Illinois, on July 
22, 1870. She was the daughter of Dr. J. B. and Ada F. Scar- 
borough, well known residents of that locality. They removed to 
Woodlawn in 1896, and here Doctor Scarborough passed to his 
reward on September 3, 1908, having attained the age of sixty-six 

Mr. and Mrs. Maynor are the parents of one son, Guy B., 
who was born October 1 I, 1889. Mr. Maynor was for three years 
Collector of Shiloh township, but has made no effort to obtain po- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 491 

litical appointment. He is a member of the Independent Order of 
Odd Fellows and of the Modern Woodmen of America. He has 
farming interest in Shiloh township and takes an active interest in 
all affairs pertaining to the highest interest of the c6mmunity at large. 


The subject of this sketch springs from sturdy New England 
ancestry and combines many of the characteristics for which his 
family has long been noted. An enterprising man and representa- 
tive citizen he has been very closely identified with the material in- 
terests of Mount Vernon for a number of years and to him and 
such as he is the city indebted for its recent remarkable advance- 
ment in lines of activity and for much of the prosperity which it now 
enjoys, Elbert M. Walker is a native of Meigs county, Ohio, where 
his birth occurred in the year 1843. Milton Walker, his father, was 
a Vermonter but left that state in an early day, migrating to Meigs 
County, Ohio, where he followed the trade of wagon making until 
1854, when he changed his residence to Wayne county, where he 
departed this life four years later. Harriet A. Newell, wife of Mil- 
ton Walker, and mother of the subject, was born in Lancaster, 
Ohio, and died in Illinois, in the month of October, 1902, at the 
advanced age of eighty-seven years. Of the eight children born to 
this excellent couple only two are living, Edmond A., of Wayne 
county, and Elbert M., of this review, the former, the third, and the 
latter the fourth in order of birth ; the following are the names of the 
deceased members of the family : Denesa Vilanda, Arius Milton, 
Permelia Alvina, Lurinda A., Clinton Heath and Emory Newell. 

Elbert M. Walker spent his childhood in his native state and 

492 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

at the age of eleven years was brought to Illinois by his parents and 
during the ensuing twenty-two years made his home in Wayne coun- 
ty, receiving a common school education the meanwhile and after at- 
taining his majority devoting his attention to various kinds of honor- 
able employment. In 1 876 he came to Jefferson county and engaged 
in the livery business at Mount Vernon, which he conducted with 
gratifying success for a period of twenty-six years, during which time 
he also became interested in the material prosperity of the city and 
gave his influence and support to all laudable enterprises for the gen- 
eral welfare of his fellow men. In the meantime he embarked in the 
lumber business and disposing of his livery barn at the expiration of 
the period indicated he has since devoted the greater part of his at- 
tention to this interest, being at the present time one of the largest 
and most successful lumber dealers in the city as well as one of the 
oldest, as the twenty-seven consecutive years given to the business 
would indicate. He first began the lumber business in partnership 
with Mr. Van Wilbanks since whose death, some years later, he 
had conducted the enterprise jointly with that gentleman's widow, 
who still retains an interest in the Mount Vernon lumber yard, the 
management, however, left entirely to the judgment, discretion and 
superior ability of the subject. In connection with the lumber trade 
he has large agricultural interests, owning a fine and well improved 
farm of three hundred and twenty acres one and a half miles north 
of Mount Vernon, which he personally manages and which by rea- 
son of close proximity to the city is constantly increasing in value. 
During the last twenty-five years he has also been quite extensively 
engaged in buying and shipping horses and mules, being associated 
with S. A. Patterson, of Mount Vernon, with whom he purchases 
on a large scale for the New Orleans market. 

In his business affairs Mr. Walker is eminently energetic and 
enterprising and for a number of years has ranked among the most 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 493 

progressive and successful business men in his adopted city. From a 
comparatively modest beginning he has steadily advanced to his 
present influential position in commercial circles and being essentially 
the architect of his own fortune he has won and worthily bears the 
honorable American title of a "self-made man." While ever labor- 
ing to promote his own interests at the same time he has put forth 
all reasonable efforts within his power in behalf of the common good, 
being as already indicated deeply interested in the material progress 
of the community, and a friend to all measures calculated to inspire 
a wholesome respect for law and order and build up society along 
moral lines. In addition to his career as a wide-awake public-spirited 
business man, Mr. Walker has a military record of which he feels 
justly proud, being among the survivors of the gallant army which 
crushed the hosts of treason during the days of the Rebellon and 
restored the government to the condition in which the fathers found 
it. He enlisted in December, ►Sbl, in Company G, Sixty-second 
Illinois Volunteer Infantry, with which he shared the fortunes and 
vicissitudes of war for two years, durmg which time he saw much 
active duty and on one occasion at the battle of Holly Springs, fell 
into the hands of the enemy and experienced in full measure what it 
meant to be confined in a rebel prison pen. 

Mr. Walker was married in 1866 to Miss Sarah M. Smith, 
whose antecedents were among the old and well known families of 
Meigs county, Ohio, where she too was born. Four children re- 
sulted from this union, all deceased except a son by the name of 
Fred E., who is now a prosperous merchant of Mount Vernon and 
one of the city's most intelligent and enterprising men of affairs. In 
his political views Mr. Walker is a pronounced Republican and an 
influential party worker, but has never been a partisan nor a seeker 
of office. Fraternally he holds membership with the Knights of 
Honor and Grand Army of the Republic, in both organizations 

494 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

having held important official positions from time to time and taken 
an active and influential part in their deliberations. 


This highly honored veteran of the great American Rebellion 
and retired farmer is a familiar figure about Belle Rive being the 
worthy representative of one of the pioneer families of Jefferson 
county. Finding in his native county wide fields in which to give 
full scope to his industry and enterprise — his dominant qualities — 
he preferred to remain here rather than seek uncertain fortune in 
other states, with the result that he is comfortably situated in his old 
age and has nothing to regret regarding the past. 

James A. Allen was born in Jefferson county, Illinois, February 
22, 1839, his birthday occurring on that of the great Washington, 
whom the subject reverences. He is the son of Rhodam and Lu- 
cinda (Atwood) Allen. Grandfather Allen was born in Virginia, 
but moved to Illinois, where he died at an advanced age and Grand- 
mother (nee Wilkinson) Allen also lived to a very old age. They 
were the parents of five children, and in their religious life supported 
the Methodist church. Grandfather Atwood, who was born in 
West Virginia, moved to Kentucky, thence to Illinois, where he died 
when about sixty years of age. His wife died when sixty-five years 
old. The subject's father, who was reared in Virginia, moved to 
Kentucky, later to Mississippi and finally to Illinois in about 1818. > 
He took up land in Jefferson county, devoting his life to farming and 
to the ministry of the Methodist Episcopal church. He died at the 
age of sixty-six years and his wife when seventy-one years old. She, 
too, was always a Methodist. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 495 

Our subject received his education in the old time log cabin 
schools, which he attended a few months each winter. 

Mr. Allen worked on his father's farm until August 6, 1861, 
when, feeling that it was his duty to offer his services in behalf of 
his country, he enlisted in Company I, Forty-fourth Illinois Infan- 
try. His first battle was at Pea Ridge, Arkansas; then he fought 
at Perryville, Kentucky, and at the great battle of Stone River, 
where he lost the hearing of one ear by concussion. He was 
wounded at Perryville. He then fought in the sanguinary conflict 
at Chickamauga, where he received a wound from which he has 
never recovered, having lost use of his right arm. He served in a 
most faithful and praiseworthy manner for a period of three years 
and three months. He was taken prisoner and was confined in the 
prison at Andersonville and also at Libby prison, the latter for sixty- 
seven days. Mr. Allen is now receiving twenty-four dollars per 
month pension on account of his wounds. 

Our subject has devoted his life to farming, which he has made 
a success, having been actively engaged up to 1 890 when he retired 
and bought property at Belle Rive, Jefferson county, where he has 
since lived. 

Mr. Allen was united in marriage first in 1866 to Elizabeth 
Taylor, a native of Tennessee. Four children were born to this 
union, only one of whom is now living, named Norman C, who is 
married and has five children. The subject's first wife died m 1 873 
and he again married in 1875, his second wife being Mary Sursa, 
who was born in this township (Pendleton). Her father was a 
native of Jefferson county and her mother of Ohio. Mrs. Allen's 
father was a soldier in the Union army, a member of Company E, 
Eightieth Illinois Volunteer Infantry, and he died in the service, be- 
ing buried at Chattanooga, Tennessee. 

Three children were born to the subject and his second wife. 

496 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

namely : Inez, the wife of H. B. McMiken ; Fleta, the second child, 
is the wife of Christopher Henelbach, and the mother of one child ; 
Mattie, the third child, is the wife of Alba Marlow, and the mother 
of one child. Fannie, the subject's daughter by his first wife, mar- 
ried Jerry Burns, and to her six children were born. She died April 
15. 1907. 

Mr. Allen in his fraternal relations is a member of the Inde- 
pendent Order of Odd Fellows. He also belongs to the Grand 
Army of the Republic, each of the above organizations to which he 
belongs being at Belle Rive. Mr. and Mrs. Allen are members of 
the Methodist Episcopal church. The former is a loyal Republican. 
Grandfather Allen was an original Abolitionist and he was Con- 
stable for one term. Our subject in many ways inherits the worthy 
traits of his grandfather, and he is held in high favor among the 
people of his town and township. 


Holding worthy prestige among the leading business men of 
Mount Vernon and enjoying the confidence of his fellow citizens, 
irrespective of party or class, the gentleman of whom the biographer 
writes in this connection has nobly earned the high position in the 
commercial world to which he has attained and is worthy of specific 
mention among the representative citizens of the city and county in 
which he resides. 

John L. Rainey was born August 23, 1 868, in Williamson 
county, Illinois, and is the fourth in order of birth of nine children 
of J. T. and Margaret Rainey, natives of West Virginia and Illi- 
nois respectively. Buckner Rainey, the subject's grandfather, was 
a native of West Virginia, where he lived a number of years and 

walk's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 497 

reared a family but later moved to Illinois and is remembered as one 
of the pioneer school teachers of Williamson county. Returning to 
the state of his nativity some time in the seventies he departed this 
life near the scene of his birth prior to the year 1 880. 

J. T. Rainey, father of the subject, came to Illinois in 1859, 
and settled in Williamson county vs^here he still resides, a prosperous 
farmer and stock raiser and one of the substantial and enterprising 
citizens of his community. His wife is a native of Williamson coun- 
ty and prior to her marriage bore the name of Margaret Perry. Her 
parents were born in Robertson county, Tennessee, but a number of 
years ago settled in Illlinois and spent the remainder of their days 
in Williamson county. 

To J. T. and Margaret Rainey nine children were born, of 
whom the following survive, namely: James L., of Murphysboro, 
Illinois; E. T., who lives in Thompsonville, this state; Mrs. Laura 
Martin, of Marion; John L., of this review; Mrs. Sarah E., Otey, 
Mrs. Joella Howell, and Charles Rainey, the last three residents of 
Marion, Illinois. 

John L. Rainey was reared to maturity in his native county and 
spent his early life on his father's farm where he learned the les- 
sons of industry, economy and consecutive effort which resulted 
greatly to his advantage when he left the parental roof to make his 
own way in the world. Dunng his minority he attended the district 
schools and at the age of twenty-three severed home ties to carve out 
his own fortune, taking up, in 1 892, the study of telegraphy in which 
he soon acquired great proficiency. After becoming a skillful ma- 
nipulator of the keys he accepted a position with the Wabash, Chi- 
cago & Western Railroad Company as agent and operator at Shel- 
ler, Illinois, where he continued two years, at the expiration of which 
period he took charge of the office at Welga on the Wabash Rail- 
road, in connection with which he acted as agent for the American 


Express Company and also took service with the H. C. Coal Mill 
Company, being thus jointly employed for eleven consecutive years, 
and that too without a single day's absence from duty. 

Resigning his position at Welga at the expiration of the time 
indicated, Mr. Rainey became manager of the large mercantile busi- 
ness of W. S. Matthews at the town of Matthews, this state. While 
thus engaged he also looked after that gentleman's extensive timber 
and lumber interests, remaining in his service one year and dis- 
charging the arduous and responsible duties developing upon him 
with credit to himself and to the satisfaction of his employer. Sever- 
ing his connection with the above enterprise Mr. Rainey in January, 
1907, came to Mount Vernon and purchased a half interest in the 
Zimmerman & Son flour, feed, coal and seed business, subsequently 
in July of the same year buying out his partners and becoming sole 
proprietor of the establishment. Since taking possession of the busi- 
ness he has added greatly to its volume until it is now by far the larg- 
est and most important of the kind in the city and one of the most 
extensive and successful in this part of the state. 

Mr. Rainey is enterprising and progressive in all that the term 
implies and in the building up and extending the large and important 
establishment of which he is the head, has displayed business and 
executive capacity of a high order. He keeps in close touch with the 
trade and by courteous and honorable treatment has steadily added 
to his list of customers and now commands a business second in 
magnitude to no other of the kind in Southern Illinois and a credit 
to his ability and energy and an honor to the city. From the begin- 
ning his career presents a series of continued successes seldom 
achieved and possessing to a marked degree the power to bend cir- 
cumstances to suit his purposes he is projecting his business on still 
larger lines with every prospect of ultimately attaining the ends 
which he has in view. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 499 

Mr. Rainey's domestic history dates from 1 894. on September 
1 3th, of which year at the town of Sheller was solemnized his mar- 
riage with Lizzie, youngest daughter of George Sheller, in honor of 
whom the village as named. George Sheller was a native of Ger- 
many and by occupation a farmer. He possessed more than ordi- 
nary energy and during his residence in Illinois accumulated a hand- 
some estate, which after his death was not only ably and judiciously 
managed by his widow but very materially increased. Mrs. Sheller 
was a woman of bright mind, strong character and a superior busi- 
ness ability and tact as the prosperous condition of the farm and 
other interests at the time of her death in September, 1901, abund- 
antly proved. While remarkably enterprising in the management of 
her affairs she also possessed those beautiful and amiable qualities of 
mind and heart which endeared her to her family and gained for her 
a large circle of friends in her own and other neighborhoods. 

Mrs. Rainey was but five years old when her father died, from 
which time until her marriage she was under the immediate care of 
her mother, who spared no pains on the training of her children and 
early impressing upon their minds the necessity of upright characters 
and correct conduct as the surest passports to honorable manhood 
and womanhood and to success in life. 

Mr. and Mrs. Rainey's union has been blessed with four chil- 
dren, whose names and dates of birth are as follows : Pearl, Novem- 
ber 23, 1896; Helen Edna, March II, 1900; John Thomas. Octo- 
ber 15, 1903, and Joseph Edward, who became a member of the 
family circle on the 13th day of March, 1907. 

The political views of Mr. Rainey are in harmony with the 
principles and traditions of the Republican party but he has never 
been a partisan and with exception of the office of postmaster at the 
town of Welga, has held no public position nor aspired thereto. 
Fraternally he belongs to the Masonic Lodge at Steelville. 

500 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 


No name is more familiar in Jefferson county than that of Casey 
and no other family was earlier or more largely identified with its 
growth and development. The founder was Isaac Casey, a native 
of Carolina, who came to Illinois at an early day and became identi- 
fied with the government survey of the southern part of the territory. 
Previously he had held official positions in Kentucky and was in the 
government employ many years. He died in 1 85 1 after a long and 
useful life, at the home of his son. Thomas Mackley Casey, son of 
the foregoing, was born in Kentucky March 12, 1809, but went 
with his father to Tennessee and from that state removed to the terri- 
tory of Illinois in 1817. The trip was made on horseback, the party 
as usual with pioneers, carrying the frying-pans and rifles and other 
personal effects. After looking the country over and staking out 
their claims they returned to Tennessee but in the following spring 
came back with their families and belongings, the former being more 
numerous than the latter. Thomas M. Casey's claim included what 
is now known as the Pleasant Grove neighborhood, four miles north 
of Mount Vernon. His brother, Abram Casey, selected an adjoin- 
ing claim and three of the Maxeys who afterwards assumed the 
relationship of brothers-in-law, also selected claims nearby, the entire 
holdings being later known as the Casey-Maxey settlement. Thomas 
M. was a farmer and became an extensive breeder and buyer of hogs, 
cattle and mules. He was a devout Christian and took much interest 
in church work, the Pleasant Grove neighborhood having the first 
place of worship in Jefferson county, and becoming famed all over 
Southern Illinois as a religious rendezvous. Thomas M.Casey's home 
was headquarters for the pioneer circuit riders and the wandering 
evangelists who carried the Bible messages to the dangerous western 
wilderness. He died October 4, 1868, at the age of sixty-four. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 501 

much respected both as a man and citizen. He married Harriet, 
daughter of WiUiam Maxey, who settled on government land three 
miles northwest of Mount Vernon, where his grand and great-grand- 
children still reside. The Maxeys were among the earliest arrivals 
in this section and have long been one of the influential families of 
Jefferson county. Mrs. Thomas (Maxey) Casey was born Janu- 
ary 18, 1801, and died at the old homestead March 15, 1877, at 
the age of seventy-six years. 

Wesley Barger Casey, a son of this couple, was born in Jef- 
ferson county, Illinois, June 4, 1834. He remained on his father's 
farm until he reached the age of sixteen years, when he began work 
as apprentice to a coach-maker at Lebanon, St. Clair county, and 
later at Troy. He mastered this trade completely and worked at 
it for many years mostly in Mount Vernon, but eventually became a 
carpenter and painter. This eventuated into the business of contract- 
ing and building which employed his time until recent years. He has 
superintended the erection of some of the best buildings of Mount 
Vernon, including the present court-house, and many of the sub- 
stantial residences. He has lived to see four court-houses built in 
Jefferson county, the first a log cabin which stood at the present site 
on the public square. The second was a brick building, with a log 
jail standing beside it, the third a modern brick structure, was de- 
stroyed by the cyclone in 1888, which practically wiped out the 
city. The present handsome building was begun in 1 888 and finished 
a year later. Mr. Casey has literary tastes and has done some note- 
worthy work in that line. When still a boy he wrote and published a 
serial story and later in life corresponded for Colman's Rural World 
and other well known agricultural papers. He was instrumental in or- 
ganizing the Illinois State Grange during the seventies and wrote for 
the press in behalf of the Patrons of Husbandry. He was the first 
town Constable of Mount Vernon and later became Justice of the 

502 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

Peace. Reared in the lap of the Methodist church, as he expresses 
it, he has affihated all his life with churches and church work. In 
1861 Mr. Casey organized at Xenia a company, which subsequently 
became a part of General Grant's old regiment. He was elected 
captain but fearing he would not be able to stand infantry service, 
did not receive the commission. Soon afterward, however, he as- 
sisted in organizing at Centralia a company of cavalry known after- 
wards as Noleman's Cavalry. Eventually it became Company H, 
First Illinois Cavalry, the first in that branch of the service from the 
state with the exception of Captain Barker's Chicago Dragoons. 
Mr. Casey was acting lieutenant on detached duty until the com- 
mand was mustered out at Corinth, Mississippi, after a service of 
thirteen months. Afterward Mr. Casey became first lieutenant and 
adjutant of the Eighty-third Illinois Infantry organized at Mon- 
mouth, wdth which he went immediately into service, at Fort Donel- 
son, Tennessee. He was acting assistant adjutant-general at Fort 
Donelson and Clarksville, Tennessee. He served gallantly and 
bravely as the record of his command will attest. At the third bat- 
tle of Fort Donelson he was shot through the arm and during the 
same engagement a horse fell on him and crushed his leg. He pre- 
served some interesting relics of the war including a written state- 
ment of Confederate Generals Wheeler, Forrest and Wharton, con- 
cerning the surrender. Mr. Casey made the official report of the 
battle of Fort Donelson. 

After the war Mr. Casey returned to his native county and en- 
gaged in building and contracting. In 1873 he embarked in the 
breeding of fine cattle in partnership with George E. Waring, of 
Newport, Rhode Island, and established what was known as the 
Grove Farm branch of the Ogden Farm herd of Jersey cattle. This 
was the first importation of Jersey cattle into Jefferson county or 
Southern Illinois and all the Jersey cattle in this part of the state 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO.. ILL. 503 

sprang from the herd introduced by Mr. Casey. The Ogden Farm 
Herd founded by Mr. Waring was the first Jersey herd estabhshed 
in the United States. Mr. Casey accompHshed much in raising the 
standard of thoroughbred stock in Jefferson county. For a number 
of years he was also engaged in raising fine poultry and hogs. 

In 1855 Mr. Casey married Lucy A. Mills, of Mount Ver- 
non, who died without issue, in January, 1857. In May, 1858, Mr. 
Casey contracted a second matrimonial alliance with Mrs. Ann A. 
M. Allison, of Marion county, by whom he had four children, Mrs. 
J. Eva Stephens, of St. Louis, Missouri; Elmer A., who died at 
the age of twenty-six; and two who died in infancy. The mother 
departed this life in 1 867. Mr. Casey marrid Mary Isabella Thom- 
son, of Albion, Edwards county, who still graces his household. 
She was born in England and came with her parents to Illinois when 
three years old and this family with other English immigrants who 
settled in Albion gave it the name of "Little Britian." Mary A. 
Casey is the only child by the last marriage. 


Prominent in the general affairs of Mount Vernon and enjoying 
distinction in business circles. Joseph W. Simmons stands out as a 
familiar figure among the successful self-made men in the county and 
city that have been honored by his citizenship. Characerized by a 
strong individuality his career represents the result of the proper use 
of native talent in directing effort and energy. He has been actively 
identified with the city of Mount Vernon for thirteen years, con- 
tributing to its material progress and prosperity, at the same time 
lending his influence and means to the generous support of all en- 

504 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

terprises having for their object the social and moral advancement 
of the city and county and the general vk'elfare of the public. 

The Simmons family came to Illinois from Tennessee, and set- 
tled in Wayne county. John Simmons, grandfather of our subject, 
was a native of Virginia, and was an extensive slave holder and 
farmer. He was a man of broad views, however, and held a high 
place in the esteem of his neighbors. He later removed to Tennes- 
see in the vicinity of Nashville, where Benjamin Simmons, the fa- 
ther of Joseph, was born and reared. Benjamin Simmons enlisted 
in the Union army at the last call, but did not see much active ser- 
vice on the field. He engaged in farming after coming to Wayne 
county, Illinois, and continued at that until his retirement a few years 
ago. Joseph's mother, Mary (Strange) Simmons, was born in 
Washington county, Indiana. She departed this life in 1900 and 
was the mother of six children, three of whom survive, viz., Joseph, 
Benjamin, who lives near Cairo, Illinois, and Mrs. Louisa Clark, of 
Wayne county, Illinois. 

Joseph W. was born on July 7, 1863, near Nashville, Ten- 
nessee, and attended school at Hickory Hill, in Marion county, 
Illinois, and later in the district school near the parental home in 
Wayne county, having been but a child when his parents came to 
Illinois. Although the scope of his schooling was thus limited to the 
common school course, yet he has made the most of his opportunities 
and has broadened himself through reading and observation, acquir- 
ing in his maturer years a fund of knowledge and experience that 
place him on a level with the best people of the community. In his 
younger manhood he turned his attention to farming and followed 
that vocation up till thirteen years ago, as stated above, when he came 
to Mount Vernon. He became engaged in the car shops for one 
year, and then began work as clerk in the general store of John 
Koons, in the building where Mr. Simmons is now located. In 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 505 

1905 he bought out Mr. Koons and went into partnership with S. 
M. KilHon. Later Mr. KiUion disposed of his interest to George 
Carter, who, in turn, sold to M. D. Coleman, the firm name now 
being Simmons & Coleman. The business is extensive and the 
stock varied and heavy, the three floors of the building which is 
one hundred and twenty feet in length being needed to accommo- 
date the needs of the trade. They handle hardware and furniture 
and also operate a tin shop carrying a full line of tinners' supplies. 

The domestic life of Mr. Simmons dates from 1884, at which 
time he entered the marriage relation with Miss Ellen Gaskill, a 
native of Thorntown, Indiana, and a lady of many estimable quali- 
ities of mind and heart, as is attested by the large circle of friends 
that hold her in esteem and affectionate regard. 

Mr. Simmons is a member of the Modern Woodmen and of 
the American Home Circle. He has positive convictions on the 
political questions of the day, and is a profound advocate of the prin- 
ciples espoused by the Democratic party. 


Conspicuous among the pioneers sent out from the Old Do- 
minion to wrestle with the dangers and difficulties of the western 
wilderness, was John Sandford Gee. Born in Virgnia, January 1 0, 
1777, he was married in his twenty-first year to Susan Tudor, the 
ceremony taking place July 1 0, I 798. His spirit of adventure had 
been whetted by the tales of daring and heroic achievement in Ken- 
tucky under the leadership of the celebrated Daniel Boone. He 
longed to join these devoted pioneers, but did not succeed in cross- 
ing the mountains until 1803. He settled in what is now Metcalf 

506 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

county, entered land and engaged in farming, after the rude methods 
prevaihng at that day in the sparsely settled state of Kentucky. In 
addition to farming, he carried on surveying which was a profitable 
business in the formative period of the new commonwealth. Sand- 
ford Gee lived a useful and industrious life, became prominent and 
popular as one of the leading pioneers of the "Dark and Bloody 
Ground" and was gathered to his fathers at a ripe old age. He 
left a worthy son to succeed him in the person of William Gee, who 
was born October 16, 1810, at the old Kentucky home. On Octo- 
ber 3, 1837, when twenty-seven years old he united his fortunes 
with Malinda Billingsley, one of the amiable and resolute girls of 
his neighborhood. The children resulting from this union were: 
John A., of Tamaroa, Illinois; I. G. Gee, who is the subject of this 
sketch; W. S., of Tarkio, Missouri; M. D., of Mountain Grove, in 
the same state; and Henry M., deceased. The father moved to 
Illinois in October, 1852, and settled about four miles east of 
Tamaroa, in Perry county. About 1883, he went to Nebraska, 
but after a residence of three years, returned to Illinois and located 
at Tamaroa where his long and active life was terminated by the 
summons that eventually comes to every human being. In his younger 
days, he taught school, later became a proficient surveyor, but his 
main business was farming. He and his wife were charter members 
of the old Paradise church in Perry county, which was organized 
in 1 853 in a barn near where the present meeting-house stands. Dur- 
ing these forty-eight years of church relationship, this sturdy couple 
were faithful to every duty. William Gee departed this life in May, 
1890, and his faithful partner survived him only a few years. 

I. G. Gee, the second in order of birth of their children, was 
born in Simpson county, Kentucky, September 19, 1841, and was 
eleven years old when his parents emigrated to Illinois. He worked 
on the farm in boyhood, later taught one term of school, and then 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 507 

began the study of medicine. After graduating from the Eclectic 
Medical Institute of Cincinnati, in 1865, he engaged in the practice 
near Gitzgerrell, in the south part of Jefferson county. In 1892, 
after a prosperous and popular career in this profession, he retired 
and located at Mount Vernon for a life of more leisure. He has 
prospered as the result of ability, energy and strict devotion to busi- 
ness. He has extensive farming interests, besides other valuable in- 
vestments. He is a stock holder and vice-president of the Third 
National Bank, president and stock holder of the Waltonville Bank, 
conducted by I. G. Gee & Company, and also a stock holder in the 
Mount Vernon Car Manufacturing Company. He has served as 
City Alderman and Supervisor of Mount Vernon township. He is 
president of the Royal Building and Loan Company, of Mount 
Vernon, and quite prominent in Masonic circles by virtue of his mem- 
bership of the Blue Lodge, Royal Arch Masons and Knights Tem- 
plar, branches of that ancient order. Personally, Doctor Gee is a 
fine specimen of physical manhood — large, well built, over six feet 
in height, always wearing a broad white hat, his picturesque appear- 
ance recalls the best Kentucky type. He is justly proud of his fam- 
ily history and few men have had a more worthy line of ancestors. 
On December 26, 1 867, Doctor Gee was married to Elzina J., 
daughter of J. J. Fitzgerrell, a native of Gibson county, Indiana, 
who came to Jefferson county many years before the Civil war and 
reared a family here. He was born in 1815, settled in IlHnois in 
1839, and died on his old homestead June 30, 1887, after a long, 
blameless and useful life. The five children bom to Doctor and 
Mrs. Gee were: James William, who died in infancy; John S., de- 
ceased; Harl L., a physician of Mount Vernon; Earl, who died 
when six years old; Knox, cashier of the bank at Waltonville, of 
which his father is senior partner. Doctor and Mrs. Gee are mem- 
bers of the First Baptist church of Mount Vernon. 

508 .wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 


The subject of this sketch is essentially one of the leading busi- 
ness men of Mount Vernon and enjoys an honorable reputation in 
commercial and financial circles throughout the entire state. As a 
merchant and banker he has wielded a strong influence in promot- 
ing the material interests of his city and county, and as a citizen is 
broad minded, liberal and public-spirited, taking an active part in 
public affairs and in many respects has exercised the functions of a 
leader among his fellow men. The family of which Louis L. Em- 
merson is an honorable representative is an old and highly esteemed 
one which figured conspicuously in the early history of Kentucky 
and later became mfluential m the pioneer settlement and subsequent 
development of Edwards county, Illinois. Allen Emmerson. the sub- 
ject's grandfather, was a native of Kentucky, and a man of much 
prominence in his day. He went to Indiana when a young man and 
after a residence of a few years at the town of Princeton, that state, 
changed his abode about 1817 to Edwards county, Illinois, where 
in due time he became an influential factor and where he spent the 
remainder of his life, dying in the year 1876, at a ripe old age. He 
was County Judge for many years, held various other local offices 
and did much to advance the material interests of Edwards county 
and make it one of the finest and most progressive sections of Illinois. 
When twenty years old, Allen Emmerson married a young lady 
nineteen years of age by the name of Samantha Mounts, a lineal 
descendant of General Montgomery, of Revolutionary fame, and a 
niece of David Crockett, the celebrated frontier huntsman and In- 
dian lighter and a representative from his state in the National Con- 
gress. Mr. and Mrs. Emmerson had fourteen children, twelve of 
whom grew to maturity, and the good old couple lived to celebrate 
the sixty-fifth anniversary of their marriage, shortly after which event 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 509 

they were called to the other world, having died within three months 
of each other. 

Jesse Emmerson, second child of Allen and Samantha Em- 
merson, was born in Indiana in 1813, and as early as 1817 accom- 
panied his parents to Edwards county, Illinois, where he grew to 
manhood and became a leading citizen. He too, was prominent in 
public matters, served as Sheriff and County Clerk and in other offi- 
cial capacities and accumulated a large fortune for the period in which 
he lived. His wife, Fanny Suardet, was born in Geneva, Switzerland, 
and when a young woman came to America with a brother, who 
went to California, the sister stopping temporarily at New Harmony, 
Indiana, where she met the gentleman who subsequently became her 
husband. They were married at Albion, Illinois, and remained in 
that town until the death of Mr. Emmerson in June, 1893, some time 
after which the widow removed to Olney, where she now resides. 
Jesse and Fanny Emmerson reared a family of four children, the 
oldest of whom, Morris Emmerson, is editor of the News-Herald, at 
Lincoln, Illinois, and an influential man of that city. Charles, the 
second son in order of birth, is cashier of the First National Bank of 
Albion and a business man and financier of wide repute. Mrs. Otto 
Krug, of Sullivan, Indiana, is the third of the family, the youngest 
of the number being Louis L., of this review. 

Louis L. Emmerson, was born December 27, 1863, at Albion, 
Illinois, and spent his early life in that town, receiving his educa- 
tional discipline in the public schools. On quitting his studies he 
accepted a clerkship in a mercantile house of Albion in connection 
with which he also served for some time as secretary of the Agri- 
cultural Association of Edwards county, the meanwhile becoming 
familiar with business and earning an honorable reputation among 
the enterprising young men of the city. 

In 1885 Mr. Emmerson, in partnership with his brother-in- 

510 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

law, embarked in the dry goods trade at Sullivan, Indiana, but after 
a year at that place returned to Albion and subsequently in Decem- 
ber, 1 886, came to Mount Vernon, where the firm of Emmerson & 
Crackel was continued eight years, during which time they built up 
a lucrative patronage and forged to the front among the leading 
merchants of the place. For five years of the above period the busi- 
ness was conducted where the Waters drug store now stands and it 
is a fact worthy of note that the store of Emmerson & Crackel was 
the only dry goods house in the city which escaped destruction in the 
terrific cyclone of February 1 9, 1 888. 

Leaving the above location at the expiration of the time indi- 
cated the firm moved to the room now occupied by the Mammoth 
clothing store, but after three years at the latter place, Mr. Emmer- 
son disposed of his interest in the concern to the Crackels and en- 
gaged in the furniture trade in partnership with J. N. Johnson. The 
firm thus constituted lasted several years and did a successful busi- 
ness in what is now known as the Johnson building. In 1899 Mr. 
Emmerson and A. W. B. Johnson organized the Boston store, one 
of the leading mercantile enterprises of the city, and held an interest 
in the business until about 1904, but in the meantime, February, 
1901, became identified with the Third National Bank, which he 
has smce served in the capacity of cashier. 

The Third National Bank, of which Mr. Emmerson was one 
of the organizers, succeeded the Evans & Gee Banking Company, 
and is now one of the most successful and popular institutions of the 
kind, not only in Mount Vernon, but in Southern Illinois. It is 
ably managed by well known and responsible men, has an extensive 
patronage in Jefferson and neighboring counties, and has proven a 
valuable addition to the business of the city, ranking, as already 
stated, among the solid monetary institutions in this part of the state 
and steadily growing in public favor. Aside from his interests in 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 511 

Mount Vernon, Mr. Emmerson is connected with important enter- 
prises elsewhere, being president and director of the bank at Kell 
and a director of the Waltonville Bank at Wahonville. For the 
past seven years he has been secretary of the Mount Vernon Building 
& Loan Association, and among other local interests with which he 
is identified are the Mount Vernon Ice & Storage Company, the 
Mount Vernon Car Manufacturing Company, the National Hosiery 
Company, to all of which he sustains the relation of director. He is 
also secretary of the Steel-Smith Dry Good Company, Birmingham, 
Alabama, and a director and leading spirit in the Mount Vernon 
Chautauqua Association, besides being connected with various other 
hnes of benevolent work in the city and elsewhere. 

Mr. Emmerson has always manifested a commendable interest 
in the material progress of Mount Vernon and the social and moral 
advancement of the people. He took a prominent part in establish- 
ing the Carnegie Library and the Mount Vernon township high school 
and served as a director of both enterprises at the time of their organi- 
zation. He also displayed great ability as a politician and for a num- 
ber of years his influence has been felt in the councils of the Repub- 
lican party, locally and throughout the state, being at this time State 
Committeeman for the Twenty-third Congressional District. He 
was appointed by Governor Deneen a member of the State Board 
of Equalization for the same district and is now serving in that capa- 
city besides holding various other posts of minor note, in all of which 
he has discharged his duties ably and faithfully and fully meets the 
expectations of his friends and the demand of the public. In 1893 
he was elected to the City Council and while a member of that body 
was largely instrumental in bringing about a number of public im- 
provements, including among others the paving of many miles of 
streets which has greatly added to the attractiveness of the city as 
well as to its material progress. He served one term as president of 

512 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL, 

the city School Board and was one of the first directors of the town- 
ship high school, but by reason of a technicality in the election of the 
latter board did not serve. 

Mr. Emmerson is prominent in secret fraternal work, being a 
thirty-second degree Mason and for a number of years high priest of 
Hubbard Chapter, No. 160. He is now grand Royal Arch cap- 
tain of the Grand Chapter of Illinois, and during the first three years 
of its existence, was eminent commander of Patton Commandery, 
No. 69, being a charter member of the same and influential in its 
affairs ever since the organization went into effect. He belongs to 
Danville Council, No. 37, Royal and Select Masters, at Danville, 
Illinois, and the Medina Temple Mystic Shrine, at Chicago. He is 
also a leading member of the Benevolent and Protective Order of 
Elks. He took an active part in establishing the organization at 
Mount Vernon and during the first two years of its existence served 
as exalted ruler. 

Mr. Emmerson was married on September 22, 1887, at Gray- 
ville, Illinois, to Miss Annie Mathews, daughter of TTiomas and 
Eliza Mathews, of that town, the union being blessed with two chil- 
dren. Aline, born July 16, 1893, and Dorothy, whose birth oc- 
curred on the 22d day of August, 1 896. Mr. and Mrs. Emmerson 
are esteemed members of the First Presbyterian church of Mount 
Vernon and actively interested in the work of the same. Mr. Em- 
merson is especially zealous in the Sunday school and has long been 
one of its most efficient teachers, having at this time a class of more 
than fifty members to whom he gives the benefit of his profound 
Biblical knowledge and wide information on general religious sub- 
jects. He is a careful and critical student of the Scriptures and an 
earnest and sincere believer in the truths which they reveal and ever 
since arriving at the years of accountability he has endeavored to 
shape his life in harmony with the teachings and example of the man 
of Nazareth. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 513 

Mr. Emmerson's success in business has enabled him to accu- 
mulate a handsome competency and he is now ranking among the* 
financially solid and well-to-do men of his city and county. His 
home at the junction of Seventh and Jordon streets is one of the finest 
in the city and the center from which radiates a grateful influence 
reaching to all parts of the community and benefitting all with whom 
it comes in contact. It is not too much to say that Mr. Emmerson 
is one of the most public-spirited men of Mount Vernon and his deep 
interest in behalf of charitable, benevolent and other humanitarian 
enterprises, has gained for him the lasting regard of the many who 
have been benefited and permanently assisted by his liberality. Per- 
sonally he is the most genial of men, a warm friend and delightful 
companion. In the social circles he and his estimable wife are ex- 
ceedingly popular and all of his relations with his fellow men have 
been marked by the affable manner and high sense of honor char- 
acteristic of the courteous and refined gentleman. 


The family by this name has been familiar in Jefferson county 
almost from its organization as the Maxeys came early, multiplied 
fast and became in time one of the most widely distributed connec- 
tions in this part of Illinois. They were mostly identified with agri- 
cultural pursuits and contributed much toward the progressive agri- 
culture for which Illinois is famous. The name is synonymous with 
thrift and solidity, enterprise and growth, good citizenship, public 
spirit and success in all the affairs of life. The work of those who 
bear this honored name and the blood relationship resulting from 
numerous intermarriages have made the Maxey connection one of 

the most influential in the county and few branches of public busi- 

514 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL, 

ness have escaped their activities. James H. Maxey, one of the 
younger generation in this popular pioneer family, has well sustained 
the traditions with his name. His father, James C. Maxey, of whom 
a sketch appears elsewhere in this volume, owns a fine farm in Shiloh 
township and has devoted his life to agriculture. James H. Maxey 
was bom on this Jefferson county farm on the 26th day of May, 
1865, and was reared in the manner best fitted to equip young 
men for success in life. His early education was obtained in Webber 
township, supplemented by the practical knowledge derived from 
work on the farm and association with those engaged in this im- 
portant pursuit. In 1886 just after reaching his majority, Mr. 
Maxey came to Mount Vernon and entered the employment of the 
Louisville & Nashville Railroad Company, as assistant storekeeper 
of their shops. He retained this position two years, giving entire 
satisfaction to his employers but at the end of this time decided to 
engage in farming, for which he had a natural inclination. After 
spending a year on the farm in Shiloh township he removed to an- 
other in McClellan township, where he made his home for another 
year. Abandoning agriculture for the time being he took up his 
abode in Mount Vernon, and spent twelve months as agent for the 
Louisville & Nashville Railroad. The next twelve years were spent 
in the produce and ice business which he prosecuted with success and 
profit. In 1904 he became secretary-treasurer and manager of the 
Mount Vernon Ice & Storage Company, a corporation doing an ex- 
tensive local business and of which he has held the active manage- 
ment up to the present time. The company has an annual business 
of five thousand tons of ice and also does a large storage business. 
Mr. Maxey is also the local manager for the Standard Oil Company 
and has held this position for fifteen years. He has displayed fine 
business judgment in directing the affairs of this great corporation 
and shown himself to be possessed of exceptional talent for admin- 
tration and organization. His activities, however, are by no means 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 515 

confined to the management of the companies with which he is con- 
nected at Mount Vernon. He owns a farm of one hundred and 
sixty acres in McClellan township and one somewhat smaller in 
Mount Vernon township to the management of which he gives suffi- 
cient time to see that they are conducted on progressive and profit- 
able lines. He thoroughly understands farming and takes much 
pleasure in his active connection with the agricultural interests of 
the county. Mr. Maxey served two years as a Democratic mem- 
ber of the City Council from the First ward, and held the office of 
Tax Collector for one year. Mr. Maxey belongs to three branches 
of Masonry, the Blue Lodge, of which he is past master, the Chap- 
ter and Commandery. He also holds membership in the order of 
Modern Woodmen. 

On October 3, 1888, Mr. Maxey married Miss Mary, daugh- 
ter of the late Willis A. Keller, by whom he has had two children, 
Lester and Helen. The former, who is now nineteen years old and a 
youth of great promise is a student of the Illinois State University. 
Those who know him best predict that he will sustain the best tradi- 
tions of his family and realize the fondest hopes of his father. Mr. 
and Mrs. Maxey are members of the First Methodist Episcopal 
church of which he has been financial secretary for a number of 
years. No residents of Mount Vernon enjoy higher esteem than 
they, and they are welcome in the most select of the city's social 


Among the sturdy emigrants who came out of New England 
to enrich the West with their energy and enterprise was a fine fam- 
ily, the Wards, of the best Colonial stock of Connecticut. Henry 

516 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

"Ward, a native of Waterbury, grew up on a farm and pursued the 
industry throughout his adult life. He married Lucy Adeline Todd, 
of Harwinton, in the same state, and removed to Illinois in 1858, 
settling on a farm in Williamson county, two miles south of where 
the city of Cartersville now stands. He died at DuQuoin, Illinois, 
March 1 3, 1 900, at the age of eighty years, having been preceeded 
to the grave by his wife about four years previously. They had six 
children, all but one of whom was born before the departure from 
the East. Of these, Elmonia, Willian Dwight, John Nelson and 
Samuel W. are dead. The living children are Julius Henry, the 
second born, and George F. M., who was the fourth child. 

George F. M. Ward was born in Harwinton, Connecticut, 
October 11,1 854, and was consequently four years old when his 
parents came to Illinois. As a boy he worked on his father's farm, 
attending the district school at intervals during twelve years, until 
the removal of his parents to Carbondale, Illinois, where he was a 
pupil in the old district high school. In 1 873 he entered the cloth- 
ing store of M. Goldman as a clerk, but in May, 1875, formed a 
partnership with John Hayden and put into operation the Carbon- 
dale Marble Works. Having an opportunity to sell out at a good 
profit and wishing to finish his education, he disposed of his interest 
and entered the Southern Illinois University. A few weeks there- 
after, having been offered a position and being anxious to better his 
fortunes he left school to engage as clerk in the clothing store of 
Joseph Solomon at DuQuoin, Illinois. Remaining there until July 
1 , 1 879, he formed a partnership with Mr. Solomon and on August 
1, 1879, opened a clothing store at Mount Vernon, Illinois, under 
the firm name of Ward & Solomon. In June, 1883, he purchased his 
partner's interest and with the exception of having a partner in one 
of the departments for a few years he has conducted the business 
alone, adding department after department until he now has one of 
the largest stores in Mount Vernon. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO.. ILL. 517 

Incorporation papers were filled with the Secretary of State in 
January, 1909, incorporating the Mammoth Shoe, Clothing and 
Dry Goods Company as a corporation to carry on a wholesale and 
retail dry goods, shoe and clothing business. G. F. M. Ward is 
president of the company; Will T. Forsythe is vice-president; Isaac 
Vermillion, second vice-president, and Henry Ben Ward, secretary 
and treasurer. This was made necessary owing to the fact that the 
busineses of the firm had grown to such an extent that it was no 
longer possible for one man to oversee the details of all departments 
and while G. F. M. Ward will still be at the head of the business as 
general manager the details of the special departments will be left to 
the new members of the firm, each of whom is well and favorably 
known throughout the country, being men of marked business ability 
in their chosen lines of endeavor as well as men of high integrity, 
and under their management this popular store will doubtless con- 
tinue to grow. 

Mr. Ward has been quite prominent in his adopted city, not 
only as a merchant, but fraternally, socially and in politics. For 
many years he has been a director in the Mount Vernon Car Manu- 
facturing Company. He has laid out two additions and two sub- 
additions to the city, with nineteen others. He purchased the ground 
and laid out Oakwood cemetery and has been president of its asso- 
ciation for many years. This cemetery is considered the best kept 
of any in all Southern Illinois, every dollar received from the sale of 
lots or otherwise being spent in improving and beautifying the 
grounds. Mr. Ward was largely instrumental in obtaining a coal 
supply for the city and was secretary of the Mount Vernon Coal 
Company during the life of that corporation. He has always taken 
an active interest in school and was several times elected president of 
the Board of Education. He has twice been honored with the 
mayoralty of the city. His term in this office extended from April, 

518 wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 

1889, to April, 1901, and the second for two years from April, 
1903. During his first term the city bought the Electric Light and 
Heating Plant, which was afterwards sold to the Citizens Company. 
Mr. Ward also served as Alderman in 1885 and altogether has 
done much to establish his claim as one of the most progressive and 
public-spirited of Mount Vernon's citizens. 

June 2, 1880, Mr. Ward was married to Miss Sarah Eliza- 
beth, daughter of Dr. Benjamin W. and Emeline Pope, of Du- 
Quoin, Illinois. The three children are Dr. Todd Pope Ward, 
born February 16, 1881, Mrs. Leora Pope Ham, born September 
4, 1882, and Henry Ben Pope Ward, born June 21, 1885. 


The well known physician and surgeon to a brief review of 
whose career the following lines are devoted has attained worthy 
distinction in the line of his calling and today he ranks among the 
eminent members of his profession, not only in the field to which the 
larger part of his practice has been confined, but he also enjoys a 
wide reputation throughout the state. While easily the peer of any 
of his professional associates in the general practice, he stands espe- 
cially high in surgery, to which branch of the profession his fame 
securely rests. 

Dr. Andy Hall is a native of Hamilton county, Illinois, as is 
also his father. Col. H. W. Hall, the latter for many years a suc- 
cessful farmer, but now living a retired life in the city of McLeans- 
boro. Col. H. W. Hall served through the Mexican war in Gen- 
eral Taylor's command, took part in all the battles in which his regi- 
ment was engaged and at the expiration of his period of enlistment 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 519 

retired from the army with the rank of quarter-master sergeant. At 
the breaking out of the great Rebellion he was among the first of 
the patriotic men of Hamilton county to respond to the call for vol- 
unteers and in that dread struggle he also earned an honorable 
record as a brave and gallant soldier. He was mustered into the 
army as captain Company A, Fortieth Regiment Illinois Volunteer 
Infantry, and at the close of the war was mustered out as lieutenant- 
colonel of his regiment. He was with his command through all of 
its varied experiences of campaign and battle, participating in many 
of the most noted engagements of the war, including Fort Donel- 
son, Shiloh, Corinth, Vicksburg, Jackson, Mississippi; Missionary 
Ridge and Kenesaw Mountain, the various engagements around At- 
lanta and after the fall of that stronghold marched with Sherman to 
the sea, thence through the Carolinas to the national capital, where 
he took part in the Grand Review, the closing scene of one of the 
greatest wars of which history has made record. At the battle of 
Missionary Ridge he was shot through the arm and in other actions 
had many narrow escapes as he was an intrepid soldier and ever 
ready to encounter danger while in the discharge of his duty. At 
the ripe old age of eighty-four, he is now spending the evening of a 
long and useful life in comfort and content, honored and esteemed 
by all who know him. 

John Hall, the doctor's grandfather, was a Kentuckian by 
birth, and among the early pioneers of Hamilton county. He too 
was a tiller of the soil, also worked for a number of years at the 
blacksmith trade and became one of the most respected and influen- 
tial citizens of the community in which he lived. He died at a ripe 
old age, but his memory is cherished as one who led the van of civil- 
ization into what is now among the most progressive and prosperous 
sections of Illinois. The maiden name of the doctor's mother was 
Julia McLean. She was born in Franklm county, Illinois, where her 

520 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

father settled many years ago. moving from his native state of Ohio. 
Mrs. Hall, who is of Scotch descent, is still living and hand in hand 
with her aged husband is moving onward toward the twilight of the 
journey's end, honored and esteemed by a large circle of friends. 

Col. H. W. and Julia (McLean) Hall are the parents of nine 
children, six of whom are living, namely: John C, a practicing at- 
torney, of McLeansboro; C. M. Hall, a farmer, of Dahlgren, Illi- 
nois; Mrs. R. M. Knight, of Hamilton county, Illinois; Dr. W. W. 
Hall, of McLeansboro; Mrs. John Norris, also of that city, and the 
subject of this review. The deceased members of the family were 
Dr. W. F., Maggie, and James P. Hall, all of whom grew to ma- 
turity, the first named becoming a successful physician and highly 
esteemed in his profession. 

Dr. Andy Hall, whose birth occurred on January 10, 1865, 
was reared on a farm south of McLeansboro, and until seventeen 
years of age lived at home and assisted his father in varied duties of 
agriculture. After attending the country schools and the schools of 
McLeansboro until about eighteen years old he taught one year 
and then took a literary course in the Northern Illinois Normal 
School at Dixon. In 1 887 he entered the medical department of the 
Northwestern University, Chicago, where he prosecuted his studies 
until 1890, in April of which year he was graduated with an hon- 
orable record, and the following June entered upon the practice of 
his profession at Mount Vernon, where in due time he gained recog- 
nition and his proportionate share of patronage. At the breaking out 
of the Spanish- American war he was appointed surgeon of the Ninth 
Illinois Infantry, with which he served with the rank of major and 
surgeon until the cessation of hostilities. While with the army he 
was stationed for a time at Springfield, Illinois, and Jacksonville, 
Florida, later at Savannah, Georgia, thence was transferred to Ha- 
vanna, Cuba, where he remained four months, during which period 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO.. ILL. 521 

his duties were very arduous and his success gratifying. He was 
mustered out of the service at Augusta, Georgia, and returning to 
Mount Vernon, resumed the practice of his profession, but at the 
expiration of five weeks closed his office and again joined the army 
and was sent to the Philippine Islands as a surgeon. 

Doctor Hall achieved high distinction as a surgeon in that far- 
off part of the world and performed many of the most difficult oper- 
ations known to the profession, besides meetmg with signal success 
in the treatment of diseases, not a few of which were peculiar to the 
trophical climate and difficult to combat. During his stay of a lit- 
tle more than a year he was stationed at San Isidro, Florida Blanca, 
Baler, Nova Liches and Mangatarem, serving in Funston's Brigade, 
Lawton's Division, and experienced many of the vicissitudes incident 
to military life in the tropics. 

While serving as surgeon of the post at Baler he became a 
member of a scouting party which was scouring the forests for Fili- 
pinos. The doctor became separated from the balance of his 
party and while alone and unarmed with the exception of a revolver 
suddenly came upon a Filipino soldier armed with a Mauser 
rifle, who was standing guard over two priests of the Franciscan 
Brotherhood. The doctor got the drop on the Filipino and 
liberated the priests, who told him that they had been prisoners for 
more than a year. Their names were Juan Lopez and Felix 

Returning home via Japan and the Hawaiian Islands in the 
year 1900 the doctor reopened his office at Mount Vernon and it 
was not long until he was again at the head of an extensive and lu- 
crative professional business, his ability as a surgeon and the prestige 
of his military service gaining for him a practice second to that of 
none of his compeers. 

Sufficient has been stated to afford the reader an intelligent 

522 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

idea of Doctor Hall's eminent standing in the noble calling to which 
his life and energies are being devoted and it goes without the say- 
ing that he is now the peer of any of his professional brethren as a 
family physician, bringing into exercise all the gentleness, sympathy 
and moral rectitude required in such a nature. In the domain of 
surgery his success has gained for him almost a state wide reputation, 
as he is frequently called long distances to perform operations re- 
quiring a high degree of proficiency and skill and it is not extrava- 
gant praise to say that in his special line of practice he has few rivals 
and no superiors in the southern part of Illinois. 

Among the most difficult and delicate of his professional work 
in Mount Vernon was the first successful ovariotomy operation, and 
the first successful operation for an intussusception ever performed 
in this part of the state, also the first successful removal of cataract 
by a local surgeon, besides a number of other operations calling for 
the highest order of surgical talent. 

Although devoted to his profession and making it paramount 
to every other consideration, Doctor Hall has not been unmindful of 
his obligations to the community nor of the duties of citizenship. He 
takes an active interest in public affairs and for some years has been 
a recognized leader of the Republican party in Mount Vernon, hav- 
ing been elected Mayor of the city in 1 897, but resigned the position 
the year following to enter the army. At this time he is a director 
of the Jefferson State Bank, a member of the City Library Board 
and a member of the local board of United States Pension Examin- 
ing Surgeons, besides being identified with various other interests of 
more or less importance. Like the majority of enterprising public- 
spirited men, the doctor is an ardent Mason and stands high in the 
order, being a leading member of the Blue Lodge and influential in 
other branches, including the Chapter and Commandery degrees. 
Professionally he is identified with a number of medical societies and 

; wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 523 

associations, among which are the Jefferson County Medical Asso- 
ciation, the Southern IHinois Medical Association, Illinois State 
Medical Association and the American Medical Association, with 
all of which he keeps in close touch and in the deliberations of the 
first two ecpecially, he takes an active and prominent part. 

The married life of Doctor Hall dates from January 1 , 1892, 
at which time he chose a wife and helpmeet in the person of Miss 
Anna L. Glazebrook, daughter of Joseph Glazebrook, a native of 
Kentucky, but long a resident of Jefferson county. This union has 
been blessed with three children, Marshall W., born August 17, 
1895; Andy, Jr., bom April 14, 1898. and Wilford, who first saw 
the light of day August 1 2, 1 904. Doctor and Mrs. Hall have a 
very interesting family and with their children form a well-nigh ideal 
home circle. They belong to the Baptist church of Mount Ver- 
non and are interested in all lines of religious work, and in the be- 
nevolent enterprises of the city. Their names are also well known 
in the best society circles of the community. 


This successful farmer and influential citizen comes from Revo- 
lutionary ancestry and is worthy of special notice among the leading 
men of Jefferson county. He is a man of high character, a kind 
neighor, and a public-spirited citizen, and his influence has always 
been on the side of civic righteousness and a strict enforcement of 
the laws of the land. 

John Tipton was born in Eastern Tennessee, in 1838. His 
paternal great-grandfather, William Tipton, was a soldier in the 
Revolutionary war, and rendered valuable service to the infant Re- 

524 wall's history of jefferson co„ ill. 

public as a member of the Continental army. He not only endured 
the privations incident to that memorable struggle, but suffered the 
loss of an eye and an arm on the field of battle. Yet he counted 
this as nothing compared to the gains won for posterity in the form 
of greater liberties and individual freedom. 

The children of William Tipton emigrated to Tennessee, 
where Grandfather Tipton ended his days, having reached quite an 
advanced age, as did also his companion, who was the mother of 
four children. One of these four was Isaac Tipton, father of our 
subject. He followed farming in Eastern Tennessee, and ended 
his days in that locality. His first wife became the mother of six 
children. He was married a second time and several children were 
born to this union also. Our subject, John Tipton, was reared on 
the farm, growing up to manhood among the surroundings that have 
developed the strong traits that have marked him as a man. 

When twenty-two years of age he came to Jefferson county, 
Illinois, and engaged in farm labor for about one year. At this time 
the Rebellion came into full swing and Mr. Tipton answered to the 
call of the President for troops as did also his oldest brother, Jacob 
Tipton. Our subject enlisted in Company I of the Forty-fourth 
Illinois Volunteer Infantry and was soon in active service. The an- 
cestral patriotic fire had not been lost, and he continued at the front 
for over four years, participating in such conflicts as that of Pea 
Ridge, Perryville, Chickamaugua, Murfreesboro and Missionary 
Ridge. Later he was at the battles of Knoxville and Nashville. 
His company was then transferred to Texas, where Mr. Tipton re- 
mained until mustered out. He then returned to Jefferson county 
and has resided here ever since. He has devoted himself to farm- 
ing and has made a success of his work. His farm of two hundred 
acres is one of the best in the county, and is adorned with about 
seventy acres of valuable timber. He has an excellent residence. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 525 

a good barn, and all necessary improvements. Mr. Tipton is thor- 
oughly familiar with the needs of the soil and manages the rotation 
of crops to a good advantage. 

His domestic life began in 1 867, when he was joined in mar- 
riage to Miss Anna Bates, a native of Kentucky. She became the 
mother of four children, only two of whom are now living, and 
passed to her reward on January 20, 1878. She was a worthy 
mother and companion, and was a member of the Methodist church. 

Later Mr. Tipton took as his second wife Miss Mary Ann 
Preslar, who was bom in North Carolina. Two children have been 
born of this union, both of whom are living. She is a member of the 
Baptist church to which she is loyally devoted. 

Mr. Tipton affiliates with the Republican party, and takes an 
active interest in local as well as state and national affairs. He is 
energetic and progressive and is worthy of the high degree of respect 
and esteem in which he is held. 


The subject of this sketch occupies a prominent place among 
the representative men of Mount Vernon and his career, which thus 
far has been one of great activity and usefulness, presents a striking 
illustration of what can be accomplished by a young man of char- 
acter and energy, when directed and controlled by principles of in- 
tegrity and honor. His rise from the humble position of a country 
pedagogue to the honorable station he now holds with one of the 
leading industrial establishments of Southern Illinois, indicates a 
worthy ambition and abilities of a high order and in view of his con- 
tinuous advancement and his present influence in the world of affairs. 

526 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

his many friends are justified in the prediction that he is destined 
to fill a still larger place in business circles than the one he now 

R. K. Weber, vice-president of the Mount Vernon Car Manu- 
facturing Company, is a native of Illinois and dates his birth from 
the 13th of September, 1870, having first seen the light of day in 
the town of Fairweather, Adams county. John Weber, his father, 
who was also born and reared in the same county, was in early life 
a farmer but later engaged in merchandising at Barry, Pike county, 
where he still resides, holding at this time the position of cashier in 
the State Bank of that place. The Weber family is of German ori- 
gin and its first representation in the United States was John Weber, 
the subject's grandfather, a native of one of the Rhine Province and 
by occupation a tiller of the soil. He came to this country when a 
young man and spent the remainder of his days in Adams county, 
Illinois, where his death occurred a number of years ago. 

Before her marriage the subject's mother was a Miss Rose Per- 
kins, a native of Adams county, and a lady of many estimable traits. 
Her people came from England in Colonial times and at the break- 
ing out of the war of the Revolution several of her ancestors entered 
the American army and rendered valiant service in the cause of In- 
dependence. Her father, who is still living, is a business man and 
for some years has been engaged in banking in David City, Ne- 

John and Rose Weber are the parents of four children, name- 
ly: H. P., a lawyer, of Chicago; Jeanette, wife of L. E. Crandall, 
of Aurora, Illinois; R. K., subject of this review, and Cora, who 
died in 1 898, when eighteen years of age. 

R. K. Weber spent his childhood and youth at Barry and after 
receiving a preliminary education in the public schools of that town, 
entered the State Normal School at Normal, Illinois, which he at- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 527 

tended three years with a creditable record. Completing his studies 
in that institution he devoted the following year to teaching in a coun- 
try school district of Adams county, and then took a course in a com- 
mercial college at Springfield with the object in view of fitting him- 
self for a business career. Leaving the latter institution with a mind 
well disciplined by intellectual and professional training, Mr. Weber 
in 1 890 came to Mount Vernon and accepted a clerkship in the gen- 
eral office of the Mount Vernon Car Manufacturing Company in 
which capacity he served until the reorganization of the company 
some years later, when he was made secretary, his promotion to that 
important position being by the unanimous vote of the board of di- 
rectors. His services as secretary proving eminently satisfactory to 
the management of the enterprise as well as highly creditable to him- 
self, he retained the place until 1 908, when he was further honored 
by being elected vice-president, succeeding W. C. Arthurs, who, in 
June of that year, was elected to the presidency which office he still 
holds. Since becoming identified with the Mount Vernon Car 
Manufacturing Company Mr. Weber has labored earnestly for its 
success and making his employers' interests his own, his services have 
been eminently creditable and satisfactory, contributing much to the 
growth of the business and to the honorable reputation which the 
company enjoys among the leading industrial establishments of the 
state. He has been devoted to the duties of his office and in the dis- 
charge of the same has demonstrated a high order of ability as an 
executive and rare judgment and foresight in his relations with the 
patrons of the company and in extending the range of its influence. 
While ever manifesting an intense interest in the growth and success 
of the enterprise with which he is officially connected he has not 
been negligent in matters relating to the prosperity of the community 
or in the duties of citizenship, being in touch with everything calcu- 
lated to benefit the city of his residence and abreast of the times on 
questions and issues concerning which men and parties divide. 

528 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

Mr. Weber is an earnest advocate of the principles of the Re- 
pubhcan party, and an active worker and judicious adviser in its 
ranks and councils and though not a partisan in the sense of seeking 
office he has been honored from time to time with important local 
positions, having represented his ward in the Common Council of 
Mount Vernon and served the city very efficiently as treasurer. In 
addition to his connection with the large industrial establishment 
previously mentioned he has other interests of a business nature in the 
city, including the Mount Vernon Jewelry Company, of which he 
is vice-president. Mr. Weber also has a vital interest in the social 
life of Mount Vernon and in various ways has labored for the ad- 
vancement of his fellow men, being an active and influential member 
of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks through the med- 
ium of which excellent organization much good has been accom- 
plished for the poor and indigent of the city to say nothing of the 
splendid fraternal spirit which prevails among the membership. 

He is also identified with the Pythian Brotherhood, in which 
he has held important official positions at intervals, while worthy 
charitable and humanitarian enterprises, regardless of order or desig- 
nation enlist his sympathy and support. 

The domestic life of Mr. Weber began in 1893, when he was 
united in the bonds of wedlock with Miss Iva Hill, daughter of 
Sanford Hill, one of the well known and highly esteemed citizens 
of Jefferson county. Mrs. Weber was born and reared in this coun- 
ty, received a good education in the public schools and is a lady of 
estimable character and sterling worth, whose friends in the social 
circles of Mount Vernon are as the number of her acquaintances. 
Two daughters bless and grace the Weber home, in whom are cen- 
tered many fond hopes and bright anticipations, their names being 
Rose Mildred and Bernadine. Mr. and Mrs. Weber reside at 712 
East North street. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 529 


Among the men of Jefferson county who have risen to high 
standing and demonstrated ability to fill worthy positions of honor 
and trust is the well known gentleman and capable official of whom 
the biographer writes in this connection. George W. Highsmith, 
Clerk of Jefferson county, is a native of Illinois and the son of Lewis 
and Frances Highsmith, the former a native of Crawford county, 
Illinois, and the latter born in Kentucky, but early settlers of Craw- 
ford county, Illinois, where the mother died when the subject was a 
child about six years old. Thirty-two years ago the father moved 
to Jefferson county where he engaged in agricultural pursuits and 
where he still resides, having reached a ripe old age and being well 
situated as far as natural comforts are concerned. At the breaking 
out of the great Civil war, he enlisted in the Forty-seventh Illinois 
Infantry and with which he served until the downfall of the Rebel- 
lion, participating in the seige of Vicksburg and all the other notable 
battles in which his regiment was engaged, earning an honorable 
record as a soldier and later becoming widely known as an enter- 
prising and praiseworthy citizen. 

Lewis and Frances Highsmith were the parents of four chil- 
dren, two of whom died in infancy, Mrs. Belle Collins, George W., 
and their father being the surviving members of the first family. By 
a subsequent marriage with Emma Painter Mr. Highsmith became 
the father of three children, all deceased and still later he took a 
third wife in the person of Julia Williams, who bore him the fol- 
lowing children: Samuel C, of Chicago; Albert C, deputy County 
Clerk; Mrs. Laura J. Reece, of Jefferson county; Walter Clark, 
of Mount Vernon ; Lewis Carl, of the same place ; Anna Florence, 
Harlin Curtis and Julia E., the last three still with their parents. 

William Highsmith, the subject's grandfather, was a Kentuck- 



530 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

ian by birth, but as long ago as 1 825 migrated to Crawford county, 
Illinois, of which he was a very early settler. He became a man of 
considerable local prominence, represented the above county in the 
eighth General Assembly and sent as captain in the Black Hawk 
war. He was a man of strong character and great personal influ- 
ence, did much to promote the material development of the part of 
the county in which he settled and departed this life about the year 
1872, honored and respected by a large circle of friends and ac- 

George W. Highsmith was born January 9, 1862, in Craw- 
ford county, Illinois, and at the age of fourteen years accompanied 
his father to the county of Jefferson, where he has since lived and 
with the history of which his life since 1872 has been very closely 
interwoven. After a preliminary educational training in the public 
schools he became a student at Ewing College, where he prosecuted 
his studies until completing the prescribed course, after which he 
turned his attention to teaching, a profession for which his tastes and 
talents were peculiarly fitted. Mr. Highsmith taught for twenty- 
one consecutive years in the schools of Jefferson county, during which 
time he achieved an enviable reputation as a capable and painstak- 
ing instructor, his long retention in the same district attesting the high 
esteem in which he was held by pupils and patrons. Meantime he 
devoted his vacations to farming, in which he has always been inter- 
ested and gained as high repute tilling the soil as he did in teaching 
the young. 

Mr. Highsmith served his township as Justice of the Peace 
and filled the office to the satisfaction of all who had business to 
transact in his court, his rulings being eminently fair and his decisions 
impartial. He was also Collector for %ome years and subsequendy 
was elected Supervisor, discharging the duties of both positions with 
credit to himself and the public and gaining the good will of the 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 531 

people irrespective of party ties. A Republican in the most liberal 
meaning of the term and an active and influential political worker, 
he rose in time to the leadership of the party in his township besides 
becoming quite prominent in the county and state affairs. In 1 904 
when his party cast about for an available candidate for the office of 
Circuit Clerk, the choice fell to him and after his nomination he 
entered manfully into the campaign, leading as many supposed a 
forlorn hope by reason of the formidable Democratic majority, but 
determining to weaken the opposition if it could be accomplished by 
hard work and honorable means. When the votes were finally 
counted, he was found to have defeated his opponent by a decisive 
majority, being the first Republican ever elected to the clerkship, 
a unique distinction of which he has every reason to be proud. 

Mr. Highsmith's election to the position he now holds was a 
just tribute to a very worthy and honorable man and the capable 
manner in which he has conducted the office has fully met with the 
high expectation of his friends and fellow citizens of all parties and 
all shades of opinions. In 1908 he was re-nominated and after a 
hard-fought battle he was defeated by a very small majority. 

On September 21, 1888, Mr. Highsmith and Miss Mattie 
Hayes, daughter of Gilbert W. Hayes, of Spring Garden town- 
ship, were united in the holy bonds of wedlock, the marriage being 
blessed with eight children, whose names and dates of birth are 
as follows : Claudie Eugene, August 1 , 1 889, died on the 6th day 
of August, 1901 ; Loretta Belle, November 7, 1892; Lula May. 
September 23, 1895; Nora Gertrude, April 14, 1898; Alva Lloyd, 
July 3, 1901 ; Almena, January 12, 1904, died October 20th of the 
same year; Sarah Aline, February 6, 1906; the youngest, William, 
born September 4, 1 908. 

Mr. Highsmith belongs to the Modern Woodmen and in re- 
ligion subscribes to the Methodist faith, himself and wife being re- 

532 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

spected communicants of that church and aHve to every good work 
under the auspices of the local congregation with which they are 
identified. Since becoming a resident of Mount Vernon he has shown 
commendable interest to all enterprises and mecisure which tend to 
the advancement of the city and on the leading questions and issues 
of the day he is widely informed and in no small degree a leader of 
thought among his fellow men. A reader, a thinker and a close 
and intelligent observer of current events, he has proud and liberal 
ideas and his opinions always carry weight and command respect. 
He is deservedly popular throughout the county, possessing the 
power and tact to win and retain strong friendships. 


In the fabric of some lives are woven many varied and useful 
experiences and these often result in a broad conception of one's 
duties to his fellow men and his obligations as a citizen of one of the 
grandest and greatest republics of the world. Not only do these 
results accrue to the individual but his sympathies are broadened 
and deepened and his viewpoint is often fixed to a much better ad- 
vantage for himself and for others by a proper perspective of his re- 
lations in life. 

In the case of the subject of this review, W. S. Chaney, of 
Belle Rive, Illinois, we have an illustration of the type of man in- 
dicated above. Mr. Chaney has come to advanced years over a 
pathway that has led him into numerous situations, filled at times 
with cheerful prospects and covered at other times with shades and 
shadows of lowering clouds, or darkening skies. Out of it all he 
has come to see and to know that the web of life has in its warp and 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 533 

woof something of sunshine and something of shadow, all of which 
has blended into one harmonious whole. 

W. S. Chaney was bom in East Tennessee in 1838 and was 
the son of William and Betty Ann (Stubblefield) Chaney, also 
natives of Tennessee. He was one of nine children, all of whom 
reached their majority. His paternal ancestors were of Irish descent, 
his grandfather being a native of Virginia, coming later to Tennes- 
see, he became an extensive land owner, having owned the land 
where Morristown now stands. He reached the age of eighty years 
as did also his companion in life. They were the parents of twelve 
children, all of whom lived to maturity. 

Mr. Chaney received a common school education and was 
reared on the farm, where he remained until 1861 . He cast his first 
Presidential vote for John Bell. At this time he emigrated to Illi- 
nois, making the trip with wagon and their one child. They settled 
in Montgomery county, but one year later removed to Jefferson 
county, where they have since made their home. 

In 1 864 our subject enlisted in the Ninth Tennessee Cavalry 
at Gallatin, Tennessee, and began his career as a soldier in the guer- 
illa warfare of Eastern Tennessee. He was involved in several en- 
gagements with Morgan, the famous raider, and was present at the 
battle of Greenville, where the Confederates lost one of their good 
generals. He was mustered out in September, 1865, and returned 
to Illinois, entering the mercantile business, at which he continued 
for about twenty-five years. He then turned his attention to his 
farm on the outskirts of Belle Rive, and over which he exercises di- 
rect supervision, although he continues his residence in town. 

Mr. Chaney 's first marriage was in Tennessee, in 1859, to 
Miss Nancy E. Witt. She departed this life in 1862, having be- 
come the mother of two children, both of whom are dead. In 1 863 
Mr. Chaney was married to Miss Mary M. Vaughn, of Jefferson 

534 wall's history of jefferson co.. ill. 

county, Illinois. Twelve children were born to this union, six of 
whom survive, they are: AUie, wife of T. D. Summers; Lena, wife 
of Orly Waters; Nellie, wife of E. E. Karn; Harry W., William 
F. and Raymond H. 

The mother of these children departed this life on February 
16, 1908. Later Mr. Chaney took as his third wife Mrs. Florida 
L. Stevens, an estimable Christian lady and a member of the Bap- 
tist denomination. 

Mr. Chaney is a Republican, and takes an active interest in 

the affairs pertaining to the prosperity and progress of the com- 



Perhaps no other resident in Shiloh township, Jefferson coun- 
ty, is more familiar with the local official affairs than the subject of 
the present review, William C. Reece, who was born in the town- 
ship on the 20th of October, 1866. His father, Baily P. Reece, 
was a native of Tennessee, having come to Jefferson county in an 
early day, and devoted the major portion of his time to farming. 
He attained the age of sixty-four years and was a resident of Shiloh 
township at the time of his death. The mother of the subject, Re- 
becca (Bullock) Reece, was bom in Jefferson county, and was the 
daughter of David Bullock, also one of the pioneers of the county. 
She was the mother of three children, viz., Cora B., wife of Jefferson 
Thomas; William C, our subject, and Anna M., who died at the 
age of thirteen years. 

William was reared in Shiloh township, and has spent almost 
all of his life within its borders. He received such education as 
was offered by the common schools of the district, together with 
the training in self-reliance and habits of industry that his parents 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 535 

tried to inculcate within him as he grew to maturity. For three years 
William was employed as fireman by the Iron Mountain Railroad 
Company, but he finally decided to abandon that work, and returned 
to the township of his birth. He became engaged in mercantile 
business, and has occupied several locations in various parts of the 
county. He has met with success in all of his ventures and has been 
fortunate in his business enterprises. He did not devote himself ex- 
clusively to business, however, and took up farming during several 
intervening periods. As opportunity presented itself, he took ad- 
vantage of trade offers, and in this way acquired not only financial 
gains, but also helpful experience, and formed a wider circle of 
friends and acquaintances. He now owns a productive and well 
kept farm in Shiloh township. 

On the 3d of November, 1889, Mr. Reece was married to 
Miss Mary Thomas, daughter of L. H. and Martha Thomas, 
who were the parents of three children, of whom Mrs. Reece was 
second in order of birth. 

Mr. and Mrs. Reece are the parents of four children, as fol- 
lows: William J. B., Ruby F., Flossie M. and Mary Blanche. Mr. 
Reece has been called upon at various times to serve the people in 
an official capacity. He has held the office of Supervisor of the 
township and has been chosen Constable and School Director for 
several terms. His interest in township affairs has been an inspira- 
tion to the citizens of the vicinity, and has resulted in the improve- 
ment of the tone of society in general. His affiliations have been 
with the Democratic party, but the question of justice and a fair 
deal are two elements that are always to be found in his analysis of 
duty. He is a member of the Tribe of Ben Hur, and has had much 
influence in promoting the welfare of that order in this neighbor- 
hood. He is also a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fel- 
lows, Woodlawn Lodge, No. 522. 

536 wall's history of jefferson co„ ill. ; 


Space will permit scarcely more than a recapitulation of the 
various interesting topics met with in preparing the biography of 
Hon. James H. Watson, but we shall endeavor to give our subject 
the fullest possible justice. 

Mr. Watson was born near Mount Vernon, Jefferson county, 
Illinois, on the 31st of July, 1846. His father, John H. Watson, 
a native of Henrico county, Virginia, was one of the pioneer set- 
tlers in the county. He was a carpenter by trade and for many 
years served as Justice of tht Peace in Mount Vernon and also as 
Master in Chancery, having been appointed by Hon. Silas L. 
Bryan, father of William Jennings Bryan, now so well known 
throughout the land. Our subject's mother, Elizabeth (Rankin) 
Watson, was a native of Tennessee. She attained the age of eighty- 
five years, passing to her reward at Mount Vernon early in the nine- 
ties. She was the mother of nine children, enumerated here in the 
order of birth. John R., William D., Thomas P., Amelia J., wife 
of Mr. B. S. Miller; MiUie P., wife of John A. Wall, Samuel H., 
Joel P., James H., and Virginia, the last named dying at the age 
of six years. 

James H. was reared in Mount Vernon and when fifteen years 
old enlisted in Company E of the Seventieth Illinois Volunteer 
Infantry. He served one hundred days and upon his return from 
the field, went to St. Louis, where he was employed as compositor 
on different newspapers for a short time. He was next appointed 
a member of the United States Detective Police, second services, 
and remained in that work until the close of the war. 

He then took up the study of medicine in the office of Dr. W. 
Duff Green, and later entered the St. Louis College of Physicians 
and Surgeons, graduating in 1880, although he had previously en- 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 537 

gaged in the practice of his profession, chiefly at Woodlawn, where 
he had located in 1868, being the first person to take up his resi- 
dence in that village. The first building erected there was the one 
constructed for his office. 

Mr. Watson's married life began at Woodlawn in 1870, be- 
ing joined to Miss Melissa Wood, who was born in Shiloh town- 
ship, near Woodlawn, in 1 854. She was the daughter of William 
and Elizabeth (Buford) Wood, who were also among the pio- 
neers of Jefferson county. They completed their days at Woodlawn 
and are laid to rest in the Salem cemetery. There were eight chil- 
dren in the family, Melissa, being the sixth in order of birth. Doctor 
and Mrs. Watson have become the parents of three children, viz., 
Neva E., Thomas Bertrand, and Fern I. Thomas joined the Amer- 
ican forces in the war with Spain, and died while in the service at 
Jacksonville, Florida, aged twenty-four years. 

Doctor Watson has seen much of public service, both locally 
and in the larger duties of the state. He held for a number of years 
the office of Supervisor of Shiloh township and has given long ser- 
vice as president of the board of trustees of Woodlawn. During 
President Cleveland's first administration Doctor Watson was ap- 
pointed a member of the Board of Pension Examiners, and with the 
exception of four years has served continuously up to the present 
time. In the fall of 1 890 he was elected to the thirty-seventh Gen- 
eral Assembly of Illinois, and was one of the famous one hundred 
one who elected General Palmer to the United States Senate. He 
was re-elected to the lower house of the thirty-eighth General As- 
sembly and was again returned to the Senate during the forty-sec- 
ond and forty-third sessions of that body. In the discharge of these 
public duties Doctor Watson commanded the fullest confidence of 
his constituents, and received numerous expressions of gratitude and 
good will for his fearless championship of such measures as were 

538 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

calculated to further the interests of the people as against those that 
were partisan and biased in character. He won many lasting friends, 
also, in the Senate halls, and looks back now with keen satisfaction 
upon the experiences and associations of those days. 

In the advancement of local interests our subject has taken a 
most willing and appreciative part. He is a member of the Jef- 
ferson County Medical Society, and has done much to popularize 
that organization and promote its efficiency. He belongs to the 
Masonic fraternity, and is one of its most representative and loyal ad- 
herents. Thus in a manifold series of activities, has he discharged to 
the fullest degree all obligations of citizenship, not only to friends 
and neighbors, but in the larger scope of public service to the com- 


To live for almost three quarters of a century in one locality 
and be an eye witness to the marvelous growth and development that 
mark the change from pioneer times to the present day, has been the 
privilege of Williamson Carroll Webb, of Shiloh township, Jef- 
ferson county, Illinois. Mr. Webb is one of the oldest inhabitants 
in the township, and was one of its earliest settlers, having come 
hither with his parents in 1 844. He was born in Tennessee on Oc- 
tober 27, 1830, and was the son of Bennett and Martha (Hull) 
Webb, the former being a native of North Carolina, and the latter 
of Tennessee. As has just been stated they emigrated to Jeffer- 
son county in 1844, and were among the earliest settlers. They 
completed their days here, Mr. Webb attaining the age of seventy- 
five years and his wife seventy. They were the parents of seven 
children, all of whom grew to maturity, Williamson being the eldest 
of the four sons. 

Our subject was reared on the farm, receiving such education 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 539 

as was afforded under the primitive conditions, but which developed 
within him the strong independent spirit that has enabled him to 
make life a success. He was married to Miss Mary M. Frost, a 
native of Shiloh township, and daughter of Newton L. and Emily 
(Stanford) Frost. She became the mother of seven children, two 
of whom, Wilford B. and Newton E. grew to manhood. She has 
passed to her reward. 

Mr. Webb's second marriage took place November 7, 1890. 
His companion was Mrs. Mary Alvis, widow of James F. Alvis, 
and daughter of Joshua and Nancy (Hall) Stonecipher, both na- 
tives of Tennessee. They came to Marion county, Illinois, early in 
the forties, and ended her days in that locality, and here Mrs, 
Webb was born, October 17, 1 85 1 . She was among the oldest of 
a large family, there being fourteen children in all, nine of whom 
grew to maturity. Her home life and training were of the most 
wholesome type, the spirit of fellowship and kindly helpfulness hav- 
ing been inculcated into her ways of thinking as she grew to woman- 
hood, having a share in the cares and responsibilities of the house- 
hold. By her first husband she became the mother of three children, 
only one of whom, Henry E. Alvis, is surviving. 

Mr. and Mrs. Webb are the parents of two children, William 
C. and Herman W. Mr. Webb has taken an active part in the 
management of local affairs. Although he has been a very busy 
man, devoting the majoi portion of his time to the management of 
his extensive farming interests, yet he has frequently consented to fill 
such offices his friends and neighbors urged him to accept. He has 
been Supervisor of the township, and was for nine years its Con- 
stable. He was Collector for one term and also sei-ved for six years 
as Highway Commissioner. He affiliates with the Democratic 
party, but stands first of all for a fair and honest administration of 
all duties, public or private. 

540 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

He has made farming his chief work, and his success in this hne 
is but a natural consequence, for he has exercised wise discretion and 
skill in judgment, so that his efforts have been accompanied with 
commendable results. He has grown with the times and in his riper 
years has coupled a wide experience with a close observation of the 
most advanced thought and methods, and this with his neighborly 
spirit, has made him a valuable and popular member of the com- 


Time swings steadily onward and the years soon troop into 
centuries. Only a few years ago the veterans of the Civil war were 
numerous, and for the most part men of vigor and energy. Now 
their ranks have become thinned and the frosts of many winters have 
whitened their locks, while the measured tread of their footfalls has 
given place to the deliberate and careful step that betokens the ar- 
rival of old age. 

Among those of the boys that wore the blue that still survive 
and enjoy health and vigor is John J. Willis, of Shiloh township, 
Jefferson county, Illinois. Mr. Willis was the son of Thomas 
Willis, who was born on the eastern shore of Maryland early in the 
last century, and when eleven years old came with his parents to 
Hamilton county, Ohio, where he was reared to manhood. He be- 
came engaged in work on the Ohio and the Mississippi rivers, and 
followed this until he was about forty years of age. At this time 
he was still smgle, and concluded to abandon the river and take up 
farming. He accordingly cast about for a location and finally set- 
tled in Jefferson county, and began farming in what is now Shiloh 
township. Here he was married to Mrs. Melinda (Tyler) Poston, 
who was born in Tennessee, and came to Jefferson county in 1818. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 541 

Mr. Willis passed to his reward, having reached the advanced age 
of eighty years. Mrs. Willis survived until 1896, attaining the age 
of seventy years. Three children were born into this family, of 
whom our subject was the oldest. The second child, Joseph N., 
died in infancy. The third son was William T., who now lives in 
Mount Vernon. 

Our subject was born in Shiloh township on the 1 1 th of Sep- 
tember, 1842, and has made his home in that locality continuously. 
He learned the carpenter's trade and this has been his chief busi- 
ness, although he has done some general farming in connection with 
his regular work. 

When the Civil war began and the trumpet call for men rang 
through the land, no heart beat with a more fervent patriotism than 
did that of John D. Willis. In July, 1 861 , he enlisted in Company 
D of the Forty-ninth Illinois Volunteer Infantry and he remained in 
active service until the close of the war. It is impossible in this 
limited space to follow him in detail through his many experiences. 
He was engaged for the most part in the southwest, and participated 
in many hard-fought engagements. He was present at Ft. Donel- 
son, Shiloh and Vicksburg, and later fought at Meridian, Missis- 
sippi; Phoenix Hill, Louisana; Little Rock, Arkansas; Franklin 
and Big Blue, Missouri ; Nashville, Tennessee, and numerous other 
smaller engagements. 

On leaving the service he returned to Shiloh township and set- 
tled down to farming and carpentry. On March 3, 1867, Mr. 
Willis was married to Miss Sarah A. Casey, a native of Shiloh town- 
ship and daughter of Green P. and Peggy (Watkins) Casey, the 
former being a native of Kentucky and the latter of Tennessee, both 
early settlers in this community. Mr. and Mrs. Willis are the par- 
ents of one son, Wilton C, who is at present County Treasurer of 
Jefferson county. 

542 wall's history of jefferson cc, ill. 

Mr. Willis has held the office of Township Supervisor, and has 
also served as Tax Collector. He affiliates with the Republican 
party and has manifested his loyalty as a citizen by his exemplary 
conduct and upright discharge of all duties both public and private. 


The agricultural interests of Shiloh township are represented 
by some of the most intelligent and enterprising citizens of this part 
of Illinois, and none stands higher in the list than the well known 
farmer whose name appears above. He is descended from pioneer 
ancestry and in his personality are combined many of the sterling 
qualities that characterized his forefathers as they braved the dan- 
gers and privations of frontier life. 

Mr. Maxey was born in Shiloh township, Jefferson county, 
Illinois, on the 5th day of August. 1853. His father, William T. 
Maxey, was born in the same township, being the son of Rev. Joshua 
C. Maxey, a Methodist minister. Our subject's great-grandfather, 
William Maxey, was a pioneer settler in the township, having come 
hither when the wilderness was still practically undisturbed, taxing 
to the utmost the courage and fortitude of the new-comer. 

Mary M. (Cummins) Maxey, mother of our subject, was also 
born and reared in Shiloh township. She was the daughter of Sam- 
uel Cummins, a well known and respected farmer. 

William H. Maxey was the first of three children, the other 
two being Jehu Marshall, who married Ella Moss, and Laura E., 
who married William A. Piercy. Mr. Maxey received such edu- 
cation as was afforded by the local district school, and as he grew 
to maturity formed the habits of industry and steady application that 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 543 

have been such important factors in his success as a farmer. He has 
made an intelligent study of agriculture and has familiarized him- 
self with the most modern methods of handling crops as well as kept 
abreast of the times in the scientific phases of soil study and seeds cul- 
ture. His farm of one hundred twenty-six acres is well improved, 
equipped with good buildings and fences, and is well drained. With 
careful attention to the rotation of crops Mr. Maxey has been able 
to get the maximum of production with the least exhaustion of the 

Mr. Maxey's matrimonial career began on March 6. 1873, 
when he was joined in marriage to Miss Martha L. Harper, who 
was born in Shiloh township, June 7, 1 852. She was the daughter 
of Claybourne B. and Matilda S. (Bateman) Harper, who were 
also classed as old settlers of this locality. They probably came 
hither from Tennessee and were the parents of ten children, of 
whom Mrs. Maxey was the sixth. 

Our subject and wife are the parents of one son, Ashley E., 
who was born January 20, 1 880. The Maxey homestead is one of 
the best known in the community, not only because several genera- 
tions of the same family have occupied it, but because the social at- 
mosphere here is most genuine and pleasant, and when once enjoyed 
is not soon forgotten. Mr. Maxey is well known also in the general 
affairs of the township, having taken a deep interest in the advance- 
ment of matters pertaining to the common welfare. He has been 
asked at various times to serve the township in its offices, having filled 
those of Township Supervisor, Clerk, and School Trustee. 
He affiliates with the Democratic party, and stands squarely on the 
principle so long maintained by that organization, but he does not 
at any time lose sight of the fundamental maxims of justice and 
equity that form the foundation of all good government. 

544 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 


With the progress and development along all industrial lines in 
modern times, there has come also a marked awakening in agricul- 
tural pursuits, and the problem of the farm is now being made the 
subject of special study not only on the part of those directly en- 
gaged in farming, but also by scientific men and special institutions. 
This has come about in a natural way. 

A greater knowledge is needed in the question of plant foods 
as well as their care and culture. Without going into detail in this 
fascinating subject we here make mention of the growth of Farmer's 
Institutes and kindred organizations, having for their purpose the ac- 
quisition of a more intelligent view of the question of agriculture and 
its associated industries. 

As an active worker in this field and an effective promoter of 
the institution feature in Jefferson county, mention should be made 
of Thomas Jefferson Holstlaw, a resident of Shiloh township, and 
at present secretary and treasurer of the Jefferson County Farmers' 
Institute. Mr. Holstlaw was born in the above mentioned township 
on the 26th day of August, 1862. His father, Henry J. Holstlaw, 
was a native of Barren county, Kentucky, and after coming to Jef- 
ferson county, Illinois, was married to Miss Lucretia E. Johnson, 
who was bom in Rome township, this county. After marriage they 
settled upon their farm in Shiloh township, where they both ended 
their days, Mr. Holstlaw attaining the age of seventy years, while 
his companion reached the age of seventy-four. Four children were 
born of this union, of whom our subject was the second. He was 
reared in Shiloh township, and received his early education in the 
neighboring district school. He later attended Ewing College two 
years. Although thus limited by circumstances, he did not permit 
these limitations to hinder his independent study and observation. 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO.. ILL. 545 

and as he grew to maturity he became a close student of the things 
that lay next door, and consequently he has become a leader in at- 
tacking the difficulties that are now being so intelligently faced by 
farming committees. 

Mr. Holstlaw was married on the 28th of October, 1896, to 
Miss Sarah A. Whitlock, who was born in Field township, June 8, 
1867. She was the daughter of George L. and Margaret (Patton) 
Whitlock, the former a native of Tennessee and the latter of Ken- 

Mr. and Mrs. Holstlaw are the parents of one child, Ida Mur- 
iel, who was born February 7, 1903. Mr. Holstlaw has taken an 
active interest in the management of local affairs, and has been a fac- 
tor in promoting a good public spirit in the community. He has 
held the office of Township Assessor, and affiliates with the Demo-> 
cratic party. He is enterprising as a farmer and stock raiser and 
enjoys prestige among his neighbors and friends. His farm has good 
buildings and fences and is well drained. 

Our subject and wife are active workers in the United Mis- 
sionary Baptist church and contribute liberally of their time and 
means to its support. Mrs. Holstlaw is secretary and treasurer of 
Household Science, the domestic branch of the Farmers' Institute. 


Three generations of the family of this name have taken part 
in the development of Illinois. The founder. Rev. S. M. Williams, 
a pioneer missionary Baptist minister, was born in North Carolina, 
January 28, I 792, and located in Franklin county, Illinois, in 1837, 
dying there in 1875. He married Frances Shaw, also a native of 


546 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

North Carolina, who died at Franklin county homestead in 1874. 
This pioneer couple had fourteen children. Next to the youngest 
of these was Stephen L. Williams, whose birth occurred in Frank- 
hn county, Ilhnois, November 13, 1839. He remained at home 
until he reached his twenty-fourth year, when he started out to make 
his own living as a farm hand. He remained in Franklin county 
until 1865, when he went to Cincinnati and entered as a student in 
the Physio-Medical College and, after finishing the course, re- 
turned to his native county to begin the practice of medicine. Soon 
afterward he located at Spring Garden, in Jefferson county, which 
has been his home ever since. In 1877 he graduated from the St. 
Louis American Medical College, January 22, 1 869. Doctor Wil- 
liams was married to Margaret J., daughter of James M. and Nancy 
(Felts) Arnold, of Robertson county, Tennessee. After an active 
practice of many years. Doctor Williams is now living in peaceful 
retirement at Spring Garden. His wife was a native of Tennessee 
and came to this county when fourteen years old. Doctor and Mrs. 
Williams had four children: Hugh, deputy Sheriff of Jefferson 
county; Viola May died in infancy; Curtis and Alsa, who is an 
optician in business in Jefferson county. 

Curtis Williams, the third child, was born at Spring Garden, 
Jefferson county, Illinois, July 21, 1873. After the usual term in 
the district schools, he entered Ewing College in Franklin county, 
when seventeen years old and remained there during four school 
years, graduating in 1 905 with the degree of Bachelor of Arts. He 
taught school for seven years, during and subsequent to his college 
career, his educational work being mostly done in Jefferson county. 
He was a teacher in the Mount Vernon high school one year, at 
Woodlawn for three years and Opdyke one year. In the fall of 
1901 he entered the University of Missouri at Columbia and was 
graduated in the class of 1904 with the degree of Bachelor of 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO., ILL. 547 

Laws. The next year he located at Mount Vernon, having been 
admitted to practice law by the Illinois Supreme Court, Decem- 
ber 13, 1904. He has since been steadily engaged in prosecuting 
his profession, his office being in rooms 1 -2-3 of the Rockaway and 
Emmerson building. He is attorney for the Fidelity & Casualty 
Company, of New York, and has other prominent clients, including 
the Home Insurance Company of New York. 

June 11, 1907, Mr. Williams was married to Miss Maud L., 
daughter of Alvin and Anna (Watkins) Gilbert, a farmer and 
stock raiser, of Waltonville. One child, Alvin Lacey, was born 
March 13, 1908. Mr. Williams has served as deputy grand chan- 
cellor of the Knights of Pythias. He is also a member of the Ma- 
sonic order and is prominent and popular both in fraternal and social 
circles. He is a member of the Republican County Central Com- 
mittee and takes an active interest in politics. 


The gentleman of whom the biographer writes in this connec- 
tion is a native of Tennessee and inherits many of the chivalrous 
qualities and characteristics of the Southland. He is descended 
from an old and highly esteemed Southern family that figured in the 
early history of North Carolina and subsequently became prominent 
in the annals of certain parts of Tennessee, the people having been 
among the influential Whigs of the latter state. Jacob Ore, the sub- 
ject's grandfather, was born in North Carolina, but when a young 
man went to Tennessee, where he married and reared a large family 
of twelve children, all of whom became well known and respected in 
their various places of residence. By occupation Jacob Ore was a 

548 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

farmer. He succeeded well at his calling and lived a long and use- 
ful life which was terminated about the year 1878, leaving to his 
descendants the heritage of an honorable name. 

Among the children of Jacob Ore was a son by the name of 
Ransom, who was bom in East Tennessee and in 1879 moved to 
Illinois and settled near McLeansboro, and engaged in the pursuit 
of agriculture. He was a Union soldier during the great Rebellion, 
serving in the Sixth Tennessee Infantry and taking part in many of 
the most noted battles of the war, among which were Perryville, 
Franklin, Chickamaugua, Murfreesboro, the various engagements of 
the Atlanta campaign and numerous others, in all of which he nobly 
upheld the government and did valiant service for the Union. 

Caroline Hedgcock, wife of Ransom Ore, was born near 
Knoxville, Tennessee, and belongs to an old family that settled in 
that state shortly after the Revolutionary war. She was married 
near the place of her birth and with her husband is now living in 
Jefferson county, Illinois, having moved to this part of the state in 
the year 1 904. Ransom and Caroline Ore are the parents of eight 
children, five of whom are living, namely: George L. of this re- 
view; Samuel E., with the Car Manufacturing Company of Mount 
Vernon; John E., who is engaged in the mail service in the same 
city; Robert F., a carpenter and builder, of Mount Vernon, and 
Mattie, a teacher in the city schools. 

George L. Ore was born January 23, 1869, near the city of 
Knoxville, Tennessee, and when ten years old accompanied his par- 
ents to McLeansboro, where he spent his youth on a farm, attend- 
ing the public schools at intervals in the meantime. Possessing a de- 
cided taste for books and study he made such rapid progress in his 
school work that at the early age of eighteen he was qualified to 
teach, which profession he followed with gratifying success during 
the eight years ensuing, devoting his vacations to the study of law, 

wall's history of JEFFERSON CO.. ILL. 549 

for which profession he had long manifested a strong preference. 
Young Ore prosecuted his legal studies under the direction of Judge 
T. M. Eckley. of McLeansboro, and in 1894 was admitted to the 
Hamilton County Bar. In casting about for a favorable field in 
which to begin the practice of his profession his attention was at- 
tracted to Mount Vernon and in 1895 he opened an office in this 
city and in due time gained recognition as a well qualified and ener- 
getic attorney with the result that a profitable professional business 
soon rewarded his efforts. 

Mr. Ore's legal career has been successful beyond that of the 
majority of young lawyers and he forged rapidly to the front, among 
the leading members of the Jefferson County Bar. In 1904 he was 
elected on the Republican ticket State's Attorney, the duties of 
which important and responsible office he discharged with marked 
ability and commended fidelity until the expiration of his term, in 
1 908, when he was re-nominated and was re-elected to said office 
in November of that year, being the only Republican elected to 
county office in said county that year. 

Before his election as State's Attorney, Mr. Ore served two 
years as Police Magistrate of Mount Vernon and for one year was 
Justice of the Peace, having been appointed to the latter office by the 
County Board. In both positions he demonstrated ability of a high 
order and a sincere desire to subserve the best interests of the munici- 
pality and his record in these offices is without a stain. As a lawyer 
he is studious, energetic, being well grounded in the principles of his 
profession and ready in applying his knowledge to practice. In the 
trial of cases he is alert, quick to detect and take advantage of a 
weak point in the part of his adversary, but under all circumstances, 
courteous to opposing counsel and eminently honorable in his meth- 
ods. He has been identified with much important litigation since en- 
gaging in the practice and during his incumbency as State's Attor- 

550 wall's history of jefferson co., ill. 

ney he left nothing undone in his efforts to enforce the law and bring 
criminals, his name becoming a terror to evil doers within his juris- 

Mr. Ore is one of the leading Republicans in Jefferson county, 
standing high in party counsels and contributing much to the strength 
of the cause which he has so close at heart. He is a